Early this month I had a bright idea – it does happen occasionally. To make up for all the time I’d spent on crime novels in the latter half of 2011, I thought I’d concentrate on short stories for a while, predominantly fantasy and sci-fi. Sounds reasonable, doesn’t it? Then I thought why not give myself some arbitrary deadline or harmless little challenge to try and encourage perseverance. Then, I don’t know, maybe I got a bang on the head that I don’t remember, because I somehow decided to write a story a day during March.
I could just have kept quiet about this, filed it under Insane Ideas I Have Had, and never thought about it again. But part of me – the part with delayed concussion, obviously – still thinks it has some merit. I admitted early on that I wouldn’t write a full first draft of a story every day – some days I’ll be pushed for time, and some stories will demand more words than I could reasonably write in a few hours – but at the end of March I reckon I could have a dozen pieces of flash fiction ready to be tweaked and polished, and a dozen promising beginnings with sketched-out plots and endings. That still allows for a few that never got off the ground.
To cut down on the procrastination time, I took my own advice from last year and went through my bits file, pulling out ideas that sounded promising, and things I’d written a paragraph of then never gone back to. I’ve assembled them in easy to use text files of their own and I have more than 20 of them ready to delve into and start writing. Now I’ve announced it in public there’s no going back. I’ll let you know how it goes, and I’d love to know if anyone out there feels like joining me.