Monday, September 23, 2013

Finding Hidden Treasures

I remember a time when writing stirred such an excitement, often keeping me up all through the night as beautiful words swirled in my imagination and then shot out the tips of my fingertips onto the page.  It’s such an erotic moment, euphoric even.  I’m not saying I still don’t have those moments, but I can confess I’ve let the business of writing and marketing take too much dominance in my life that it’s squeezing most of those moments into the land of the neglected.
Not only has my own creativity suffered by being too business-minded, but so has my enjoyment of reading the beautifully written words of others.  As someone who devoured a minimum of fifty novels a year, so far this year I can count five.  My focus is so much on business, survival and meeting basic needs, I just can’t get lost in a good, long novel, not even ones I’ve waited months and even years to be released. 
I can’t express how much I appreciate my writer friends who dabble in flash fiction and short stories, because those have sustained me this year, or else I’d have been lost.  I’ve really come to love and appreciate flash fiction and short story writers like Christian Fennell, Jeff Suwak, Kelly Shackelford, Sarafina Gravagno, Frank Wall, B.R. Asher, Lucien Knight and a few others on Scribophile.  Their stories have fed, nurtured, inspired and sustained me as I work hard to clean up this train wreck of a life. Some of them don’t know how much their words have helped me. I crave them.  I need them.  I look forward to their next blog posts, short stories, and their next flash of humor, romance, satire or tragedy. 
My writer friends have also inspired and pushed me.  My best friend, Jenna Sands, has inspired me more than she’ll ever know.  Those members of my local writer’s group who refuse to let me quit or give up (Denise, Maggie, Kathy, Lorien and Dawn) will always have a place in my heart.
I used to be a novel snob, only reading full length (often epic–sized) novels and never giving short stories a furtive glance.  I’ve grown such a fondness for them now and am sure I will always keep them a beautiful part of my life as I once again focus on my next novel.  I’ve also grown an appreciation for the novella.  I really hope it comes back in fashion and more writers dare to publish them.
What hidden treasure have you stumbled upon lately?
Till next time,
~T.L. Gray

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