Tuesday, December 31, 2013

The Continued Story

Strange as it may seem, my life is based on a true story.

Ashleigh Brilliant

“Sometimes the stories are better if they go a little longer, and I choose to do it in four issues.”

Sergio Arragones

It’s New Year’s Eve and I’m sitting quietly and happily in my place, grateful for my health, for the hot cup of coffee sitting next to me and for the tissues to help me with the inexplicable nose bleed I’m having.   (I haven’t had one of those in years.)  Other than that, I don’t have a care in the world.  I’m extremely grateful.  With regard to my writing, I thought I would give myself a little break and write only one blog a day, rather than two.  That may have been a mistake.  And I think I know why.  It’s like the difference between continued stories in a comic book and stories that begin and end in one issue. 
Generally, continued stories were better.  They even sold better.  Here’s why.  If a story was a “done-in-one,” then that was it.  The good guy usually won and it was over.  Nothing more was required of the characters, or the reader.  A continued story was different.  If it looked like the hero was in big trouble at the end of the story, the wait was about a month, or two, before the solution was presented.   Sometimes the wait was even longer.
When I was about 15, I found an old copy of Daredevil #33, dated October 1967.  In this issue Daredevil fought the Beetle and at the end of the story it looked as if Daredevil was doomed.  Now when I found this comic, Daredevil was at issue # 125, so I knew he had survived.  I just didn’t know how.  It was months, if not years, before I found Daredevil #34 and during all that time, I wondered what happened.   How did he escape?   My mind stayed attached and focused. 

Daredevil Vol 1 33Daredevil #34 (v1)

(End of Daredevil #33, copyright Marvel Comics, 1967)

Yesterday I wrote that I would give myself about five months to reach my 500th blog.  That’s one a day.  That’s a reasonable goal.  It’s a fair goal and a worthy goal.  It may also be a goal that’s too easy.  That’s only one blog a day for the next four and a half months.   That doesn’t seem very challenging.  There’s no suspense or tension.  Barring a disaster, one blog a day is easily reached.  That even includes an occasional day off. 
But two blogs a day?  That’s another story.  Here’s are some facts to go with each of my previous goals after my 100th blog:
·      It was always difficult.
·      Setting those goals created unneeded difficulty.
·      Some days I was tense and irritable because I was doing something besides writing.
·      There were several times when I thought I wouldn’t reach my goal.
·      There were more than several times when I wanted to quit.
·      There were several times when I felt like only my Muse and I cared about this work.
·      There were one or two times when I thought only my Muse cared.
·      There were no times when my Muse wasn’t with me.
·      There were almost one or two times when I wrote without getting distracted.
·      There were no times when this wasn’t difficult.
·      There were no times when this wasn’t a blessing.
·      There were no times when I didn’t feel this was absolutely necessary for my emotional and spiritual health. 

I think my mind needs to stay attached and focused to my writing.  I need to make a goal of two blogs a day, or 500 blogs by March 30.  That still gives me some breathing room, but not much.  This needs to be hard.  This isn’t a hobby.  This isn’t recreation.  It’s creation.  I’m creating a new life.  I’m really trying to make some changes and I believe writing will help me make those changes.  

So, while I do this with reluctance and fear, I need to create a more challenging goal.   Honestly, I wish it could be otherwise, but I’m not going to let it be.  I need to Get Started and Keep Going…and continue the story.