June 13th, 2010

Post date: Jun 13, 2010 9:07:44 AM

I know that I have mentioned already that I have finished my “On The Beaten Path” novella, or whatever the heck I’ll be calling it before submitting it to that little online publishing outfit from across the ditch. I am happy also to report that as I write this I am doodling with a sequel, where Gene goes all bad ass on the Provisionals and generally makes the Bruce Willis character from the Die Hard series look like a goody-too-shoes boy scout.

But, I digress.

I do that rather well by the way; digress that is—enough so that I forget my point.

No. The point of this little entry is that I’m in desperate need of a good old fashioned moan.

You see, having finished the novella after what can be said as a very long time since I first come up with the idea, which was a lifetime ago really, I find myself wanting to edit. Ok, to be fair, the story itself had been written over several months ago (can’t remember which one), and I have been editing ever since then. And there, my friends lies the problem.

Exactly three to four days ago, I told two of my simming buddies that “hold and behold, I’ve finished the story!”. They high fived me of course, considering that they’ve been on the receiving end of my constant running about like a mad chook asking if this or that made sense, and were undoubtedly relieved. However, after a few years of simming together in make belief world, I knew me well enough that I wouldn’t be surprised if any second now I’ll show off yet another version of said supposedly finished novella.

And why not, I’ve done it before you know. The first version appeared in my friends’ inbox for commentary, which consisted of Mars, terra-forming and the supporting character being a Japanese fellow called Horushi Hurrigawa and he and Gene were spooks returning to base and Horushi ending up badly injured that Gene had to leave him behind enemy lines. By the time it reached the Authonomy website, Horushi had a sex change and managed to become Gene’s ‘kind-of’ love interest. After a considerable amount of feedback, it evolved and was more or less written to have a beginning, a middle and an ending.

So, with it being finished then, what happened you may ask?

I started editing straight after.

I became so emotionally attached that I thought I could start editing straight away. Unfortunately, that was the dumbest thing I have ever done. Well—I’ve done plenty of stupid things… falling off a Shetland pony while impressing girls at the local pony club (so sue me, I was like fourteen at the time! :-P), capsizing a boat and managing to run over my left foot with my old power chair… but editing straight after finishing the story certainly goes into the ‘pretty dumb’ category.

You see, I did not give myself a chance to disassociate myself from Gene, his buddies and their antics and simply dove in. consequently the story changed locations and year it was set, where I wanted to plonk it all in the Barbary Coast and in the mid to late 2070s. I thought it was part of the editing process, and in my mind I was merely attempting to make it cool and more approachable for the potential reader. In fact, I utterly stuffed it up along the way when—in desperation to get the creative juices going—I agreed to have a mate help write the novella. Naturally, my mate put his twist on things, and without sounding like some self centred righteous writer, I now really wish my mate learned to string his sentences in a pleasant manner in the same way he dealt with computer programming and the like. On a side note, I did collaborate on another writing project, so it’s not a bad experience as I’m just letting you believe.

But yes, four days ago I finished “On The Beaten Path”. Two of my favourite writers, whom I’d consider good pen pals and facebook buddies, are urging that I take the necessary time to disassociate myself from Gene in that story, and I am finding it hard. But I will prevail and wait it out for two more weeks.

I will.

If not, well… let’s not go there eh?