Little Miss S Should Be Ashamed of Herself

There are some things you just don’t do as a writer. At least I don’t. I never refer to anything I’m writing as a “book” or a “novel” because they aren’t. Until they’re out there in the world, they’re just stories and I talk about them as such. I never only save to a hard drive and haven’t since a completed story that an editor had shown interest in was nuked by a fried hard drive. And unlike some people, I have never had a main or supporting character who was a writer of any kind.

I have written about detectives, a photographer, architects, an atmospheric scientist, a pathologist, an ex-spy, an indie musician, a comic artist, and those are just the main characters. I’ve mostly considered writing about writers to be boring because it’s harder to get into the mind of someone you’ve never met or been and it often requires a lot of research. This, to me, makes it quite fun. Telling a story about someone who’s doing the same thing you’ve done since you were a little sprog dragging around your grandmother’s old typewriter and misappropriating ribbons for it from your aunt’s office just seems too easy.

The best moment of my life was discovering correction tape.

Unfortunately for me, if there’s one thing my characters love it’s getting me back for all the shit I put them through (and I put them through a LOT). Many of my ideas come from dreams I’ve had or lyrics from songs that strike me a certain way and recently both struck me at once. A wonderful idea came together filled with drama, humor, a mystery of sorts, and a guy who used to be a famous reporter. “Hell no,” I said to myself, attracting the attention of several cats. “No character of mine is going to be a journalist.” I then realized that I sounded like my mother, and not in a good way.

Even more unfortunately, I wasn’t able to come up with anything for this guy to do that would allow him to get into the drama or mystery other than be a writer. So here I am writing about a writer, and it’s actually harder than I expected. Maybe it’s because I’m determined to not make this about me, but I don’t know. I’m really enjoying the story and characters, but this still feels so wrong. We’ll see how this plays out.

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6 thoughts on “Little Miss S Should Be Ashamed of Herself

  1. If it makes you feel better, one of my short stories is about a journalist and a town. While I’ve been a writer for most of life, since I could write, I experienced something abnormal as a journalist at my first paper. I chose to write about it three years later in a fiction setting. It became more about the town in which my journalist character wrote. I’ve had interest from one magazine in it, and I’ve continued to work on it to make it better. If we, as writers, must choose a character who likewise is a writer, give it a good swing. Good luck and good post!

    • Thank you! I’m doing my best to make sure he’s not too much like myself and putting myself in his place rather than trying to fit him into my shoes (he wouldn’t look good in the loafers, honestly). Good luck on your own work as well, it sounds kind of interesting!

      • Thanks! You can always give your writer character a different personality. We are a diverse group full of odd personalities and quirks. Thanks, something about a dry town that did not permit the sale of mixed drinks or liquor opened my eyes as a reporter and writer to the characters in the world. The town for which I wrote fought over this issue until liquor was finally allowed to be sold in restaurants within the city limits. I knew I could make it funny, but have a connection, too. I hope I have done that. I wish you the best of luck with your story! I understand the cliche of writing about writers. Like I said we are a fun group of people. 🙂

  2. Good Luck on writing about a writer… I myself don’t like to refer to my stories as anything other, but when I am surrounded by people that ask, “How’s your book coming a long, I’ve used book, story, novel, and manuscript…. I guess when you start working on something and a year later it’s still on your Word Doc. Top Five List, it starts to feel more like a book. 🙂 Best Regards,

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