I bounce back and forth more than usual this December. Screenplay, poems, short story, tweaking a nov. The Hunger Games trilogy (big thanks to the FLO for exposing me) makes me want to unearth/return to a fantasy nov I began back in high school.
When I was younger, I wrote novels all the time. I mean it. So did Lena. We each had our series and swapped books to do cover art. By sixth grade I'd banged out a 200-page "special edition." It was no big deal. Sit down every Saturday morning and write on the family laptop. Crank out stories. Plot out more in a thick blue mini notebook.
But somewhere in late middle school and high school, when any free writing time was usurped by my emotion-fueled, cryptic nonfiction pieces, I thought I'd unlearned how to write extended pieces.
As a senior in college I went to my professor and told her I was worried. I was applying to a fiction grad program and they wanted a 30-page writing sample, and I didn't think I could do it. At that time I wrote flash fiction and the occasional four-to-five page story.
"Write me a fifteen-page story," she said promptly.
I cheated a little--started with a prose poem I'd written previously. And I wrote from there. Came back from Thanksgiving Break with a twenty-page story. Got into that fiction program, too, though I ended up not attending.
I think that's what I'm all about. Making myself do the things I don't think I can do. With a helpful nudge/shove along the way.