Pardon me, I appear to have run out of excuses. The laundry is running, the floors are swept, the baby is sleeping and the preschooler is making art up in his room. Guess I can spit a little something out here.
I was thinking the other day that another reason I can’t write is because I can’t tell stories. All writing, fiction or not, is about telling stories. It’s about what happened, why it happened, what is going to happen. Term papers, science journals, newspapers, romance novels, cereal boxes, all of it is telling a story. And I suck at telling stories.
I once took a fiction writing class in college. Oh, what a waste of money. I mean, I read some great short fiction by real actual writers in real actual anthologies, but whatever the prof was trying to pound through my head about Plot and Conflict and Setting just went whizzing past my left ear instead. I remember writing a horrible little piece about a girl (ME) who worked at a grocery store (MY JOB AT THE TIME) and dated a boy who also worked at the grocery store (MY BOYFRIEND AT THE TIME). Nothing happened in the story unless stilted dialogue counts as “happening.” It was embarrassing to turn in. I am glad that it wasn’t one of the ones that went to critique — or if it was, I am glad my brain mercifully blocked it out. The professor got paid to read that tripe but hardworking students shouldn’t have to burn their eyeballs on it.
When I discovered blogging about four or five years later, I was super excited. Hooray, I thought. Writing that doesn’t have to have a plot, a thesis sentence or even much of a point. Perfect.