down and outloaded
Being on a tight budget but nonetheless having a lot of times on my hands I started to browse the free offerings on my Kindle and was disappointed but not surprised to find that both of the ‘humorous’ books I downloaded were horrible. I won’t tell you the names as I’m sure the writers had the best of intentions when they started to scribble away but even at a cost of nothing I felt ripped off. I literally wanted to be compensated for my wasted time. Apparently humor is harder to write than I thought.
At least for these 2 authors.
That got me to thinking. A good book should be more than words strung together on the page. A good book should lift the reader up, intoxicate them and leave them with a deeper appreciation of the language and life in general. There should be times where they are dizzy after being swept along in some great drama, their heads spinning and their toes tingling as the plot twists and turns like an exalting lover. The reader should have a knot in their stomach as they approach the end as if some great friend was about to depart.
Here’s the thing. I can’t write like that. I’ve tried but I just can’t sustain momentum for more than a few pages. So I’m left churning out these stupid short stories at a dizzying clip. In my defense none of them are really novel material so in a sense I’m doing the best I can with inferior material. And by inferior material I mean the rope being tugged on by my imagination on one end and my attention span on the other. Now fans of Nietzsche are going to immediately recognize a similarity between that metaphor and his quotation “Man is a rope stretched between the animal and the Superman–a rope over an abyss” but they couldn’t be more wrong. My metaphoric rope is made of hemp while it is widely understood that Nietzsche preferred camel hair. Perhaps if I were to suddenly stumble upon a great idea I would be able to knuckle down and write a real book.
There’s only one way to know and that is to attempt (again) to write the great American novel.
There was this guy. He’d had his share of misfortune. Poverty, disease, might even have one of those shriveled up arms that you see sometimes. Nah, scratch that. That might turn some people off if I decide to throw a little romance into the story. Just the poverty and disease and if that’s not enough for you then just picture him with a limp or a hump or something. Maybe halitosis.
He smokes and coughs a lot.
There was this situation he was in. Very grim indeed. It seemed like everything was against him and all the breaks seemed to be going to other fellows. Hardship and all that.
Then he meets this girl… which makes me glad I decided against the shriveled arm because otherwise I’d have to give the girl something to even things out. I’m not saying that romance can’t work when people have physical issues but how many book covers have you seen with a guy with windswept hair, a chiseled chest and a shriveled arm clutching a girl in a long flowing dress, perfect hair and a giant cleft lip? Something tells me that the publisher would have problems with that idea. Just saying.
Anyway, this guy has to face up to this big challenge and overcome some random stuff that nobody sees coming but in the end, and in no small part because of the deformed girl whom he fell madly in love with, he manages to arrive at the end of the story battered yet triumphant.
Obviously I’m going to have to flesh it out a bit, a ‘bit’ being about 300 pages, but if you’re a bigtime heavy-hitting mover/shaker literary agent or publisher you’re no doubt all worked up about my premise and dying to contact me. I could probably have a rough draft to you by Thursday.
I can have the sequel to you a week later. In it our hero is thrust into something beyond his control involving the sister he never knew he had and she has big ol’ titties.
I think I just wrote my way into a movie deal.
Perhaps this real writing stuff isn’t as hard as it sounds. I was told that there might be travel and researching involved but maybe that’s just how writers stop other people from wanting to get in on their racket. The less competition the better if you follow. As it is major reviewers are choked with 300 new books every week to choose from so I guess the last thing writers want is for it to get out that writing a bestseller is actually pretty easy as long as you follow a tried and true formula. Ironic that there is nothing novel about most novels.
It’s funnier if you say “big ol’ titties” with a southern accent. Probably should have mentioned that earlier.