Daily Archives: October 22, 2013

The Writer’s Curse


(cracks knuckles and waggles fingers over keyboard, doing digit-aerobics before typing)

I’m undertaking a personal challenge: flash fiction based on the results of a random plot generator.

My plot:

“The story starts when your protagonist swears to remain single. Another character is a school teacher who wants to break the rules.”

Well, now. Who will they be? Let’s see. A hermit and a rebel. A nun and a party girl. Heartbroken and heartbreaker.

What hijinx ensue? What conflicts, emotions, tensions? What consequences?


I got nothin’.

And that’s how it’s been for weeks. Months, even.

I carry a notebook and pen almost everywhere I go, prepared to record story ideas, but none have arrived. It’s as if my work — editing and critiquing — has cut a wide swath in my mind, not allowing the flames of creative thought to cross the fireline. In fact, the flames aren’t much of a threat, and the fireline has been there so long that weeds have grown between the edges.

open meadow at Wilson's Creek Battlefield (c2013, KB)

open meadow at Wilson’s Creek Battlefield (c2013, KB) I only had a smallish mid-range lens, so the grand view is reduced to something bland. Kinda like my writing lately.

There’s a short story contest deadline approaching soon. I have maybe two weeks to present a polished story. Six hundred words are written. Six hundred good words. But now I stare at the cursor blinking at the end of the last line, and can’t think what comes next.

The writer’s curse.


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