Writing time.

Not much of it this week. I am entertaining the parents until Monday. Doesn’t matter too much for the next few days because work is intense at the weekend. That was the deal – I’ll do loads at the weekends as long as I am largely left alone the rest of the week. This will break down over Christmas, that’s understandable, but should be generally true.


Panoptica is coming together fast now. The collection of disjointed scenes is gradually forming a whole. I’m a bit scared of it to be honest – if politicians get hold of it, they’ll think it’s a manual. What to do after completing the plan outlined in ‘1984’. And some of the things they do are truly horrible – yet are merely the ‘next logical step’ to what they are doing right now.

Inside Outside, Channelling, Norman’s House and Victor’s Will have been set aside while I concentrate on Panoptica. I think I’ll make better progress doing one at a time. They aren’t ignored, if I get an idea then I’ll write it down, but I’m not going to push them yet.

I have a Christmas short story mapped out. I did Christmas Past with ‘A Christmas Contract’, Christmas Present with ‘The Sweet Man’ and ‘Cold Turkey for Christmas’ and this new one will be set in Christmas Yet To Come.

The short has been festering in my mind for a few weeks, trying different permutations, and now I know who the main characters are and which of them is telling the story. That’s a big advantage because in a short story you really only want one point-of-view describing the events. You can’t switch heads like in a novel. What that character sees and experiences is the whole of the story. If they are not present when something happens then they don’t know about it at the time.

I can’t write it tonight. Tonight is early-sleep and limited-whisky because tomorrow is my only early start of the week. I might write it tomorrow night if I’m not too knackered. I’m aiming for around 2000-3000 words and I like to do the first drafts of these shorts in one session. My hard disk is full of shorts I started and decided to finish off later. Shorts must be completed in one night, edited the next night, and marked ‘done’.

Twitter is good training in editing and brevity. I can call in there for a couple of minutes at a time and practice crazed imaginings in 140 characters or less. I genuinely did not think I could write anything that made sense with that limitation, but it seems I can. It will tighten up the writing and help to cull my verbose ramblings.

They have to come out somewhere of course, so the verbosity level here is likely to go off the scale. If it hasn’t already.

So, nothing sensible from me tonight. Instead I’m going to try to dream this story to completion, rough it out at work tomorrow and type it up tomorrow night.

I think it’ll be one for the kiddies…



One thought on “Writing time.

  1. I’m happy that your parents are still ambulatory, and perhaps not senile enough to want to cohabitate with you permanently. Yet.

    My mother had a bit of a medical malfunction during a routine procedure at 61 which made her hemiplegic. My father carried her around for a few years until it killed him. No doubt a notch in Simon Chapman’s bedstead so he can get a hard on about smokers. I sincerely hope that Simon gets to enjoy the same form of exercise.

    I was a right shit. The academic golden boy on a trajectory to who knows where. What my parents didn’t know was that I was looking up ‘addicts’ in their Grolier encyclopaedia and knew I wanted to be like them. The addicts, I mean, with their cool sunglasses and scantily-clad women.
    It took a decade before I evened out. Now, I can’t abide a cunt for more than a couple of minutes – and that includes me. They managed ten years..

    I suggest that you venerate your parents for not having put you in the well – although they might yet achieve that – and treat every moment with them as though it might be their last. Catheterised, on an oxygen bottle.

    My nephew is turning 15 soon, so he is up for some LI light reading. I’m sure he’s looking forward to your next tale – ‘The last turkey in the shop’. Something that will distort his mind, like those addicts in the encyclopaedia.


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