Sunday, May 10, 2009

Another Assignment Done

Assignment 5 for my module concerning my AKL manuscript has been done and will go into the mail tomorrow morning.

This week I also intend on doing one or two more assignments so I can get back in front on that side of things. Two months ago, I was so far ahead it was scary, so I allowed myself some time to just veg and let other students catch up. It's taken me another two weeks to get back on track and into the flow.

I have six assignments in total left for this semester. That's both modules combined. I think I have about seven weeks left to submit them in. I hate running things close to deadline so it's time to put in a burst.

I still haven't done anything about a new short story - although it's not for the lack of trying on my brain's behalf. I still have this nagging thought about the Festive of Fear anthology. I've been given a lead and now my brain keeps throwing up possible ideas. So far, they've all been so much crap. Little more than offal to mulch the garden with. But I've been in this situation before. When I was trying to think of something for The Blackness Within Anthology. I was also in this situation with this year's AHWA flash and short story competitions, and again with this year's PARSEC competition. I struggled for weeks with half baked ideas while I churned out some 20,000 words on AKL. I'd posted that I wasn't going to enter as nothing was coming to mind.

And then bang, bang, bang! I wrote three short stories in a week or two. And then a few weeks later, the idea for God's Piscatorial Church jumped up as I watched my computer power up at work.

I'm half hoping nothing comes up in the next two months for Festive Fear, but you just know something will.

What is your best non-writing related exercise which will almost guarantee you a new idea for a short story? Walking, hiking, fishing, driving, yoga, sex - inquiring minds want to know...


  1. It's a funny and elusive place where the stories emerge from. We have to take our greyhound for long walks and the fresh air has my head at its clearest. Mind you, I've had ideas pop into my head while standing in the shower... We've been out for dinner and I've seen or heard someone around me that triggers an idea for a story.

    I'll jot the thought down in a note book and expand on it later. Point form notes on a page, then expanded into a rough draft.

    I don't doubt that the stories will come to you eventually, BT.
    Happy hunting.

  2. I also tend to get some of my best ideas while in the shower. : )

  3. My best ideas always hit me when I haven't got a pen to hand. I am then consigned to repeating the idea over and over until I find a pen and paper. I will write on my arm if necessary.

  4. Alan, I've had ideas arrive while walking the dog, but I'm patial to finding them while driving.

    Cate, I'm surprised you don't have ink poisoning from the amount of stories you write!

    Pharo - welcome! Everyone, can I take this opportunity to introduce you to Pharo - my writing buddy and grammar guru. Are you finally going to start a blog?

  5. Like Pharosian, always when I'm in the shower. I think I need to hang a whiteboard in there.

  6. Monotonous things like showers and downloading stuff at work sometimes help.

    But protests and political debates work better for me.

    Nothing's guaranteed though.