"A man has an idea. The idea attracts others, like minded. The idea expands. ..." -- quote from The Crow
I'm not sure why this quote keeps popping into my head the last few days, but as I've been contemplating what I'm about to do it's been rolling around my skull. Plus, it's just a great line delivered so wonderfully and how many times have I ever been able to use it?
I like to say I've been 'noodling' on a novel, but that's bullshit. I've put a few hundred thousand words onto a page (several pages actually) over the years, but never been satisfied. Or I've just never had the balls to put it out there. It's easier to sit on something like I'm a hen hoping that egg I laid will become a chick. Hope is a dangerous thing ... I will resist one of my favorite Shawshank Redemption quotes here.
I recently read B.J. Novak's One More Thing: Stories and Other Stories and loved it. That combined with several disconnected story ideas in my head has led me to this point. The idea is to write a series of short stories that can act as standalone material, but are connected. The goal is for each story or chapter to be enjoyed by itself. No need to read further if you don't want to. But the more you read the more you learn about the character and his motivations.
I'm not sure why this appeals to me. I mean, if I'm going to write one continuous series of events involving the same character, why not write a novel? I don't have a real answer to that question, other than this idea feels right to me. With a series of shorts I have some freedom. I don't need to follow a contiguous line that leads to a penultimate event. It feels more like life. A series of seemingly random events that make up a lifetime.
I already have a few pieces written and as it turns out I've been working towards this type of story format for the last twenty years ... fuck. I'm getting old. The idea is to release one new chapter each week with no cap on the amount.
I want to put a caveat in here that if I get busy I may not post one week, but if I do that I've built in an excuse. So once a week it is.
“Write a poem to a friend, even a lousy poem. Do it as well as you possibly can. You will get in an enormous reward. You will have created something.”
— Kurt Vonnegut in If This Isn't Nice, What Is?