You know, I said I wasn’t going to do much writing while I was abroad. Well, I may have been a little naughty and wrote a short story in about six days or so. Wasn’t planning on it, it just sort of happened that way.
You see, I had this idea while in London for a short story (and I’ve had so many ideas for stories while abroad, but that’s a discussion for another post), and on the ferry from Portsmouth to Normandy, I had a lot of time on my hands, about four hours worth. Most people were sleeping or working at the last minute on assignments. I didn’t feel like doing either, and there was Wi-Fi, perfect for searches on random facts for a story.
So, I finished writing and editing an essay for an anthology I’d heard about, and then I started on “The Murderer’s Legacy” (that’s the working title, anyway. I may change it when I edit it). It’s about a man living in a magical version of Victorian England who is accused of murdering his wife and is about to receive the worst punishment imaginable. The story follows his attempts to figure out who actually killed his wife and why as he is lead off to his punishment.
I got about two-thousand words in on Monday, when I started the story (like I said, I had a lot of time on my hands). I might’ve finished the story sooner, but as I was writing it the story sort of evolved on me. At first the magical elements were minimal, but then they started becoming a bit more widespread. And then I started having my main character try to figure out who might be the real murderer, and I added more dialogue, and even up until the last minute, I was making changes to the story that I’d never intended to put there.
Well, I guess Stephen King would approve. He said in his nonfiction book On Writing that one should write a story as one unearths an artifact, starting with one small piece revealing itself and then dusting and picking away to find what else is there (that’s what he advises, more or less). But still, at nearly fifty-eight hundred words, I had no idea I would unearth so much!
Anyway, I hope that when I get the chance in a few weeks (or months), I’ll be able to do a really good job of editing this story. Despite being a lot longer than most magazines like to accept, I like to think it has potential. And I want to see what more I unearth when I go through the editing phase, maybe see if I can make my main character a bit more of a bastard, someone you’d want to hate, as well as add more explanation into the world the characters inhabit and go into some of the more principle characters themselves. And hey, maybe I can add a whole new scene to the beginning.
Though if I do that last one, I may need to do a lot of rewriting and editing. Well, if the story calls for it. And it’s not like I haven’t done that before with a story.
Well, it’s late here in Bayeux, and I better head off to bed. Big day tomorrow and all that. I’ll try and write some more if I can. As they say here in France, bon nuit, my Followers of Fear.