Greetings from Pavorisms.
Starting in a few days, your regularly scheduled operator will be unavailable for a couple of weeks, and she wanted to leave some of her regular features in capable hands to make sure you felt warm and snuggly knowing that your regular Stream of Consciousness Saturday posts would go uninterrupted.
But we all make mistakes in life, and she picked me as one of the stand-ins. You’ll be getting a prompt from me in a couple of weeks, and if things really go sideways, you may end up seeing some of my regular content here as well. If that happens, I recommend you just keep your head down. I can’t guarantee that there won’t be baby bodily fluids involved. I, uh… I brought a tarp. I left it somewhere around here. Just huddle up and make a friend, okay?
Am I qualified to stand in at a writing blog with a readership far beyond my normal, tiny circle? Here’s the skinny: When I was in high school I wrote prolifically. Awful short stories, horrible poetry, a really ill-advised novel, and a play that was maybe not so terrible. Then I stopped. I don’t know why. I think I knew my writing was about as appealing as a pile of badger droppings and decided I’d do the world a favor and stop dropping those little nuggets.
Then, in college, I picked it up again. This time, I stuck to plays, and I wrote a pretty good one and a handful of not-so-bad ones. A couple of them saw production at high schools and community theaters, and though I never made a dime off any of them, they convinced me that maybe I wasn’t entirely devoid of talent. But then I stopped again. Probably that badger droppings feel again, possibly the disillusionment with my chosen field of study, likely a total lack of confidence.
A few years have passed, now, and something inspired me to pick up the pen again. Starting in March of this year, I began the transcontinental trek of adapting my pretty good play into a full length novel, and peppered that with an (almost) weekly short story and a heck of a lot of reflection about writing and parenting and running, all of which I do with dogged regularity. Something clicked, and now I can’t stop. As a result, I’ve got a manuscript of about 96,000 words (yeah, I get a little obsessed with word-count) that I’m waist-deep in editing, and, oh, probably about 150,000 words of drivel not unlike what you’re currently reading over at my blog, Pavorisms. (If you’re curious about what I tongue-in-cheekly refer to as my capital “W” Writing, you can find my collection of short stories there as well.) In short, it’s been a productive year. (Whether or not any of what I’ve “produced” qualifies as readable, entertaining, or fit to print on toilet paper remains to be seen. I mean, badgers “produce” poop, as we’ve already established.)
So, uh, am I qualified to be here standing in for Linda? Meh, maybe not, but as Jules said in Pulp Fiction, “I’m tryin’ real hard to be the shepherd.” I don’t know what herding sheep has to do with the current situation, but it’s Samuel L. Jackson speaking there, and we all know you don’t fargo with that motherfargoer.
At any rate, I’ll be providing you with a prompt at next week’s end and maybe a few tidbits besides. In the meantime, if you felt like heading my way and giving me a read, that’d be super, too.
And, of course, my thanks to Linda for handing me the keys to the car while you’re out. I promise that I will kick it into reverse when I’m done with it and run all the miles back off before you get home. Don’t worry about the dents in the chrome, those will buff right out. Also, I don’t know anything about the scratches on the side panels, the crack in the windshield, or the bits of gore in the grille.
In fact, let’s just pretend I was never here.