Tuesday, November 16, 2004

What could it hurt?

So, you may have noticed a distinct drop-off in the number of my posts, starting this month. That is to say, I haven't posted at all this month. That darn NaNoWriMo!

I'm taking a break from writing stories to write a post, so you know I'm still alive and well. Who knew I had so many stories inside me? I may have to switch my novel to a collection of shorts. See, I was under the impression that creativity dwindles as one ages. I'm already in my 30s; I shouldn't be having so many creative thoughts that I can't type fast enough to jot them down. Of course, I'm re-learning the DVORÁK keyboard, so I'm typing slow anyway...

This morning, I wanted to start my novel over. Again. I already did once, because I realized my previous story (about super-genetically-engineered humans, vampires, cyborgs, nanites, World War III, time travel, evolution, tribal society, big business, AI, love and loss, possibly aliens...) would take too long to finish (more of a 15-book serial than a novella). So, as I was biking to work, up a hill, in the rain, on a windy mountain road with no sidewalks and plenty of blind corners, with a cliff on one side of me and a wall on the other, and traffic whizzing by - barely missing me, I thought a story about a guy biking to work, up a hill, in the rain, on a windy mountain road with no sidewalks and plenty of blind corners, with a cliff on one side of him and a wall on the other, and traffic whizzing by, who gets HIT BY A CAR AND DIES would be an interesting story. And I could keep the first page of my previous story:

Phoenix, can you hear me?


Well, at least your sense of sarcasm is still intact. Try to relax; there may be some discomfort during this process. How do you feel?

I feel...nothing.

Mm. Can you remember where you are?


Can you remember your name?

You called me Phoenix.

So I did, and so your reasoning skills and short term memory seem to be functioning as well. Is there anything else you can remember?

...I have the most exquisite memory of my death.


That was a bit melodramatic, don't you think?
The idea was of a guy, as he lay dying, revisiting his life and his memories, the good and the bad, the mysteries he never solved, guided by two opposing spirits (angels and demons) who were in reality just aspects of his own personality. Sort of Illusions, but with death (or more death). Illusions is a great little book by Richard Bach (of Jonathon Livingston Seagull fame, not Richard Bachman of Turner Overdrive fame [or was that Stephen King?]).

Unfortunately, I overslept this morning. In the sense that, if I can remember what I dreamed, I've had too much sleep. I knew it was going to happen, too. Last night, when I went to bed (at around 1am, because I was playing a game my younger brother told me about, called schiffbruch, which is German for Shipwreck, which tells you pretty much everything about the game) I figured that I wouldn't be able to get up at 5am like I normally do. So, I reset my clocks for 6:30.

Big mistake.

My body knows when it wants to get up. I woke up briefly at 6am, having already, in my mind, overslept by an hour. Unfortunately (and here's where I made my mistake), I didn't get out of bed immediately. I went back to sleep.

The problem is, my brain sleeps dyslexically. This is true. I have REM sleep before deep sleep. Usually, it's the other way around. So, I was dreaming when my alarm went off, and it stuck in my mind. I was dreaming of a murder-mystery. I hit snooze [TABOO!], so I could finish the dream.

By the time I came fully awake, I had already worked out the victim (a woman, disguised as a man), the location (a theatre [for plays, not movies]), the suspects (a star (male) and another man, possibly the director?), and the detective (myself!). In the shower I worked out who the killer was, and the motivation (she committed suicide, because of depression over her lover's infidelity (the director), and tries to frame him for her murder; he then tries to pin it on the actor).

Anyway. Now I have THREE stories going on simultaneously in my brain. And I haven't even touched all my notebooks that I brought from America, which are crammed full of other plot ideas and story points. Sigh. What to do?


  1. I know what you mean; I started over twice before settling on the story I'm writing now. It's going pretty well, I've managed almost 30,000 words so far, which puts me behind by couple of thousand words. It's not the world's greatest story, however. It lacks certain key elements. Such as a plot. But, you know, I can add a plot later on once I get the ideas out. At the very least, writing everything I have so far has lent me some good ideas for a plot.

  2. I was originally going to reply to your comment with my current theory on Week Two Wall Avoidance, but I decided to post the whole thing as part of the main blog instead, and that opened the door to several other posts (hey, as long as I'm writing...), so if your RSS reader is clogged with posts from me, you have no one to blame but yourself. :) Not that you'll read this anyway, as it's a comment and not a post, so your RSS reader won't pick it up. In fact, I could say nasty untrue things about you, and you'll never know! Mwahahahaha! THOMAS PROFESSES TO ENJOY HIGH INDEPENDENT CINEMA BUT ACTUALLY PREFERS BIG BUDGET SUMMER FLICKS! Oh yeah, I went there. God, when are they going to get more coffee here?!