Writing woes . . .

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I’m picking away at a story that may-or-may-not be ready for Xchyler’s next anthology contest (open now). But, I really have my doubts about it.

I’m already 3K words into the 10-15K word story and just barely finished the intro, which probably means it’ll read slow at the start. I’m also already struggling with a flat and underdeveloped character. . . Sigh, I know it’ll be great once the conflict develops, but I just hope I can pull it together to keep the readers reading till that point!

Here’s a little taste of what spilled onto the page last night:

Brooks acted quickly, and slammed a large glass beaker over the autonomous machine. Now that it was contained he joined Elizabeth in staring at it as it pushed and poked at the sides of its transparent prison.

“It— It’s acting on its own. I’ve never seen a shard do that before,” spoke Miss Paramour breathlessly.

“It’s a miracle,” added Brooks.

A smile emerged at the corner of his partner’s mouth.

“It’s kind of cute, like a little metal octopus.” she said.

“A naughty one,” commented Jim as he watched the thing ram the side of the glass in an attempt to break through, an attempt thwarted by his own firm and on the top of the container.

“Yes, and that’s what we shall call it, ‘Nautilus’—‘Nauty’ for short.

“But you already gave it a name, and it doesn’t much look like a Nautilus.”

“Oh, hush. It didn’t like its other name, and I don’t rightly care what it doesn’t look like. I shall call it Nauty.”



  1. J. S. Collyer

    I’ve been there my friend. I know it’s touch and may seem drastic but have you considered cutting those first 3k? If there’s any important exposition it can always be slotted in later.

    This is really hard but sometimes it just has to happen: if something’s not working it needs to be considered whether it needs to be there. I hurts to cut it and sometimes it takes some juggling, but I find the writing and my loev of it ends being the stronger for it

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