When back home for the Fort Sinquefield event, I was speaking to an older gentleman who writes articles for the Clarke County Democrat. He talked about various writers from the area. I told him that, in the past, I had spoken with Tom Franklin, author of Poachers, Hell At The Breech, and Smonk. I told him that I really loved his work and I loved his way of writing. He then asked me….”Are you a writer?”
My answer was….”I like to think of myself as one.”
I LIKE TO THINK OF MYSELF AS ONE! In what world was I a writer? Obviously, in the world that only exists in my head. I have two books that I’ve started along with a few short stories. I would love to sit down and finish them. But hey, that’s a pretty novel idea, right? Sit down and finish something. It’s easier said than done.
I remember when I was in middle school and I thought of myself as an author. I had a three chapter “story” I had worked on for days. Most of it took place in this pine thicket near where I was raised. I imagined a clearing in the middle of this small forest where I, along with a few friends, was camping. Some things happened that escape me, ending in various events as a result. It was a masterpiece to me. To others that read it, it became something of childish talk. At the time, I did not realize that you weren’t supposed to use people’s real names in fiction. That little bit of information wasn’t something that existed in my practice of writing. No matter the public view of my work, I was proud and held on to it for quite a few years until I read it and realized that my mind frame was totally different. Talk about a realization of maturity and age.
I quit writing for many years. It became buried underneath other issues in the back of my mind. You know….like the Algebra we learned and figured we’d never use it again. While in high school and in college, actual writing took place for grades and not for enjoyment of brain cleansing. When you don’t write, you lose creativity. I didn’t know this until much later.
After moving to the Atlanta area in 1999, I somehow became connected to this person who was operating a site called 10 Percent Bent, a site for the LGBT community. I wrote a few articles that seemed appropriate. I was able to drag some of that creative writing out of the cobwebs of my brain. It worked for nine articles and the site disbanded for whatever reason.
Some time after, I started a book after talking to friends that frequented a clothing optional campground in north Georgia. We joked around about it for a while but deep in my mind, it wasn’t really a joke. It was something I thought I could…and wanted to do. I started writing and finished one chapter. I started on the second chapter and it hit me. A BLOCK! I had so many ideas about what I wanted to happen later in the book, but I couldn’t get there. I stopped writing.
A while later, I had a grand idea of writing another novel. I was really excited and I had everything painted out in my mind. The mind is a wonderful canvas on which to paint a picture. I could see it all and I started to write about it. This motion picture was playing out in my head and I was the only person smacking on popcorn. I had two chapters written and had started on a third….when it hit me. A BLOCK!
Damn it! Why were these blocks hitting me?! Was I standing in the line of fire of someone hurling blocks? I got so mad at myself because I couldn’t get around this block. A while back..maybe sometime last year…I opened the first book and was able to type out about half a chapter. That is the last time I tried writing on either of my books. I’ve written on this blog, but sometimes that takes an amazing amount of concentration to get a complete thought process into a Word document.
Maybe soon I’ll talk about how scared I am to share my work with people for fear that it will get loose and become the work of someone else before anyone knows I exist.