For quite a while I’ve been hard at work on my novel, Beautiful Boy. As many writers will tell you, novels and the characters in them can quite often get away from the author and generate what seems to be lives of their own—free will, if you will. Such has been my constant and ongoing dilemma and struggle with not only the characters, but also the overriding themes of Beautiful Boy. It all seemed to have gotten away from me, out of my control; the deeper I made my way into the novel.
It might be that this is the sign of an undisciplined writer. I don’t know. All I can say is that this is the most difficult thing I’ve ever written. I have to keep going back to various points to rebuild the machinery running the plot.
In the past few days I hit such a wall that I had to completely halt work on the novel and relax. To relax, I wrote a short story, “Sixteen and.”. I placed it here a few posts back. 5,100+ words that I know should have been spent on my novel, but I had to do it.
Today, the novel seems a little clearer. The fog is parting just a bit. But I may take a break and write another short story, this one based on a certain real-life monster who lived in a certain real-life monster-ville in which I resided as a teen. And it occurred to me as I pondered this monster and this burg: all places where humans congregate are suffused with the potential for evil.
It’s no wonder I prefer the solitude of wilderness as often as I can pry myself out of the city and retreat to these places. I’ll think about that fact as I write about some of the things I witnessed as a kid in a story I’m currently calling: “Snookie”.