Friday, April 6, 2007

Short Doesn't Mean Quick least that's what I'm learning. Having finished the first draft of THE RUNAWAY HEIRESS, I put it aside for a bit to let it settle before I go back and tweak it. I know it needs a little work before I can submit it. So to keep myself busy while HEIRESS simmers, I thought I'd write a short story.

I've never attempted this form of fiction. You would think it's just like writing a novel only shorter, wouldn't you? It's not quite that easy.

First, I had that whole lotus issue (see the post below this one). I spent way too much time resolving that one. I'm happy with the way that's going, but there is so much more to deal with. The thing is, in a short story, every single word has to perform. There isn't room to ramble around. You have to be sharp and precise. So I find myself agonizing over each sentence. I've changed words more times than I care to think about. I've altered sentence structure to enhance the flow of things.

Then there's the research. Why-oh-why did I set out to write a short story set in Singapore? I've never been to Singapore! I wasn't entirely sure where it was on the map before I looked it up. Oh, yes, I knew it was "over there" in the vague direction of Kuala Lumpur, and other cities whose names roll off the tongue with the ease of dishes in a Chinese restaurant. But I'm learning so much! For example, chewing gum is not allowed in the Republic of Singapore. English is the official language of business. And not surprisingly, the potent cocktail Singapore Sling was invented there.

And if that weren't trouble enough, I made the main character a sailor. Cue Crosby, Stills & Nash, "I have been around the world." Yeah, that's about all I knew about that!

But it's fun, this learning process. I'm going to know a lot more about a lot of things by the time it's over. And that's always good.

Besides, tonight is the night we go to the Thai restaurant. Ah, the things we do for research!

Have a great day!

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