Since I seem to have found a stride in my writing habits recently, I thought it would be wise of me not to take too much downtime. So, I've chosen Clyde King as my next project. It's a short story set in an alternate western backdrop. Actually, it's set in the world of another novel that I haven't written yet (XII).
I'm finding it simultaneously liberating and confining as I begin to delve into it. It's great to jump out of the grays and browns of a post-apocalyptic cityscape and to leave the vampires behind (for a time). However, I'm now deliberately trying to write a publish-worthy short story and that means word count limits. A puzzle has formed in my head because I know basically what is supposed to happen, I just don't know how to make it fit in a few thousand words and still make it sound pleasant. I'm having fun trying something new, though.
I wrote my first short story in one night a while back and it was more of an exercise than anything else. There was no dialogue, there were no named characters, and there was no start and not really an ending to speak of either. That piece turned out to be two thousand(ish) words, even with the limits I had placed on it. I've just written over seven hundred for Clyde King without trying and I don't think I can get it all in before I hit 3K. Time will tell.