Struggling With The Short

I’m trying to write a short story, and I’m trying to get back into running.

Both are turning out to be struggles. The running is going so-so. I’ve got a short round of about four kilometer that I run a few nights a week after work. Last week I managed to do it at under five minutes per kilometer, but this week I’m back up to five and a half. It’s not encouraging, but I guess it’s a good thing that I’m at least doing it. I want to get back into a shape where I can comfortably run the fourteen kilometer route I found last autumn. It feels like I’ve got a ways to go still before I pull that off.

Then again, I kind of got rushed into it last time. I went to the hash in San Francisco while visiting my brother and ended up running nine miles without having barely run at all for two weeks before that. My legs hurt like crazy, but it passed in a few days and I kept it up, running fourteen kilometers once a week and a few shorter runs as well as walking and spinning.

That sounds like a whole lot now.

I could probably get back to it, but I’m not sure how easy it’ll be with the shift changes at work. At the moment, I get off from work at midnight and I’m home half an hour later. If I go out running at one am there’s no traffic at all – just the odd drunk. Its awesome being out running at that hour. It’s dark, I’m alone, and I’ve got some really good running music. I feel like I can go on forever.

This is one of the mixes I listen to while running. It fits perfectly. It starts out rather slow, but builds in intensity the longer it goes, and at the end, it really helps keep me moving. It’s also the kind of music that really sets my mind wandering. My body runs one way and my thoughts drift of somewhere else entire.

It’s perfect.

I may not be able to do that for much longer now. With my new shift at work, I’ll leave the office at four in the afternoon. I also have to get out of bed at five in the morning in order to get to work. With a shift like that I can’t wait until the streets are deserted to go out running.

Technically, I could get up even earlier and run then, but I doubt that’ll happen. I’m not the kind of person who gets up earlier than he has to. It’s just not me.

I’m sure I’ll find something else that works though. It can’t be that hard. Necessity breeds innovation and all that. Then again, first I’ll have to work myself up from the measly four kilometers so I can get some meaningful distances behind me. If I don’t, it really won’t matter anyway.

Picture somewhat unrelated. This is from one of my favorite summertime writing spots, the Angler's Rest between Cork and Ballincollig.  It's a decent walk from home, they've got a big beer garden, with a view of the river, and a decent selection of beers. Great spot. Go there.
Picture somewhat unrelated.
This is from one of my favorite summertime writing spots, the Angler’s Rest between Cork and Ballincollig.
It’s a decent walk from home, they’ve got a big beer garden, with a view of the river, and a decent selection of beers.
Great spot. Go there.

Same as I’m struggling with the running, the writing is acting up too. I’m trying to get my short story going – the one about Alene, that I’m writing for the Diversity in SFF challenge. I wrote another post about it here.

It’s coming together, but it’s again not coming together as planned, and it’s going real slow. I like the situation I’ve put her in. It’s great for the theme of the challenge and I’ve got a bunch of different ideas for how I could angle the story. It’s just not coming together very well.

I feel like maybe I should take a step back to the outlining phase and do a really detailed outline of what’s going to happen. That way I can have the bones of the story in place and I’ll just have to dress it up with pretty words.

The deadline is Sunday, so if I don’t feel like I’ve made any progress by Wednesday evening I’ll probably do just that. When I wrote the first draft of my novel I found that starting over and re-planning the scene often worked really well. There’s no reason it shouldn’t work for a short story either – especially when I know what it’s meant to be about.

We’ll see how it goes.

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Struggling With The Short

One thought on “Struggling With The Short

  1. Dani says:

    It was a difficult challenge for me too, but for different reasons. I could only stomach writing a few hundred words a day, being in that character’s head any longer than that would’ve driven me nuts.

    Writing tip no one tells us: you don’t always have to like your characters.

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