Thursday, December 16, 2010

Thursday Thoughts

When we get snow in Ohio, we don't just get snow. We get blowing powder, slush, ice over snow over ice, and sometimes all three at once. I'm fortunate enough to have seen snow rollers, an extremely rare phenomenon where the weather essentially makes its own snowballs by blowing the snow across icy ground. (How rare? Not quite sure, but the conditions are very precise and wikipedia's article has links to individual incidents.) This was several years ago, but I always keep my eye out for them.

About writing ...

I just finished my short story for the FWO challenge last night. As usual, it is too long, though I'm happy with how it turned out. The romantic subplot feels a little underdeveloped, so I will have to figure out how to enhance it without adding to the word count. I usually don't include romance in my stories unless the story is about the romance, but this was an experiment in a particular kind of dynamic.

I've noticed that increasingly, music does enter my stories - usually not from the perspective of a musician, but as some kind of wonderful, ineffable force. Farewell to Flesh from Emerald Tales, about a person pondering whether to give up her physical life to become an embodiment of inspiration, is probably the most obvious example, but Three Great Loyalties - which *is* a story that features musicians, since it was based on a prompt to write about your (the writer) worst job ever - becomes about the transformative power of music.

For me, writing about harpers feels self-indulgent. It's equivalent to the "writer story" that so many editors hate to see. It's also a bit like work. I love playing the harp, yes, but I'm writing, I don't want to be thinking about harp. But, of course, it's hard to deny the influence that music has on my life, and my approach to arranging music is very organic and almost mysterious ... it comes out of me, and I'm not always sure from where. So that perspective definitely comes through when I incorporate music (or more broadly, art of any type) in my stories.

Count for 12/9 - 15: 7,771

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