How is it that I’ve been away from this humble blog for so long? Here’s how: I don’t have anything spectacular to fulminate or pontificate about. I think the summer heat and humidity have drained any original thoughts from my head.
I could tell you about the three rejections I received in seven days, but that’s hardly newsworthy or unique in our trade. Or I could tell you how wonderfully my Fathers and Sons stories are coming along, but there’s nothing especially interesting going on there either. Curiously, I seem to be getting ideas for stories outside of that universe more than I do within it. I’ll take them all, of course, but the Father’s and Sons bits are of a piece, and I don’t like having them left undone, assuming “done” is a state I could ever achieve with them. The more I write of these three men the more I see needs to be written.
Actually, I’m just about ready to give up on submitting the individual stories for publication. I’m not sure any of them will be finished until all of them are finished. Each grows from and feeds into each, so no one story feels as though it is properly “told” because I’m always seeing ways it must be adjusted or refined to serve the evolving needs of the other stories.
I’ve said before that I consider Fathers and Sons to be a “novel in stories” (which is a concept I came up with independently but that I’ve seen here and there now that I’m aware of such a beast). There will be a narrative that connects them all, but the stories won’t be spaced evenly through time the way a conventional novel normally is. I like to think that each of the stories can stand alone as a whole, and that’s certainly how I’m writing them, but as I said, they’re not going to be finished for a while. Does that make sense?
So I’m now writing them with a longer-term view. Perhaps I will submit individuals here or there, especially if I find a submission call that seems suitable — and I probably have a half dozen submissions currently out there — but all of that will be provisional since the stories could change.
I don’t mind this, but I do miss the gratification of the occasional acceptance. So I’ll keep doing the only thing I know: writing and rewriting. And that’s why there’s just not much to talk about lately. (Aside from the ceaseless running. I’m building toward my first half marathon in October. It’s terrifying, even though last week I did lace up to run that exact distance — 13.1 miles — and did it. Then comes 2014. A full marathon?)