I’ve been drafting a new short story for the last month or so, in between revising chapters of Kublai, the science fiction novel I wrote via dictation last year. This short story is entitled either “Relics” (or “In Blackwater Woods”–I haven’t decided yet), and I’m experiencing that great creative high that comes with finishing the first draft.
In part because this is the first story I’ve written that’s set in the tilted version of West Michigan that I’ve had in mind for so long, in a version of the hippie farming community I had the good fortune to grow up in. As kids in this community, we always had our own particular, slightly slanted version of the world that we lived in, which lends itself well to magic–or at least, the suggestion of magic.
As these things go, I had to write a few pages before I was able to get to the beginning of the story. That’s part of what you see with the handwriting in red on this page, about what kind of a story this is (though this might make it into the story later on). (See also: My creative process at the moment.) That line at the bottom, I think, is where this story really begins.
Here’s the whole opening paragraph of this early draft:
“Our dungeon master hung himself from the hay loft the week he was home on leave from the Navy. Really, he was our storyteller–what we played had not been Dungeons and Dragons in a very long time–but to call him that would be to imply that we were not capable of telling stories ourselves, which we certainly were, and would certainly need to, now that he was dead.”
Next step: Type it up! (And revise.)