Posted by Kathy Waller
Last weekend, I wrote a post about cows. It ran to over 1100 words, and I hadn’t covered even half of the cows I’d planned to. Furthermore, it was silly. I scrapped it.
Today I started a post in which I intended to compare a book by artist-author Shel Silverstein to the novels of Katherine Paterson. The first part–the Shel Silverstein part–ran to over 1300 words, and there were more to come.
That posed a problem, as most of the piece was to be about Katherine Paterson. I liked what I’d written, and so would other English majors, some of them, maybe, but most people aren’t English majors. They find literary criticism tedious. So I scrapped it.
Then I thought about writing a brief post about symbolism, drawing from the novels and stories of Ernest Hemingway. It was going to be lighthearted and self-effacing–because symbolism is my least favorite literary device, owing to the fact that I rarely know it when I see it.
In my head, the post sounded both interesting and amusing. But before I could put fingers to keys, it began to sound like it could run to another thousand words or more. I’m glad I realized that before I wrote. Scrapping three posts, even justified scrapping, would hurt.
So here I am with no post. I’ll be traveling the next few days and want to get my post written and ready to go online before leaving. So I’m grabbing the next topic in the pile–Alien Life Forms on Earth.
Although NASA hasn’t officially admitted this, reliable sources within the organization swear that these beings not only visit Earth, but actually come here for rest and relaxation. Most gather at Alien Resort, “a favorite vacation spot known throughout the universe.” At the request of my husband, CEO (I guess that’s what he is) of Alien Resort, I’ve drawn pictures of some of the extraterrestrial visitors.
At first, I was reluctant to do the portraits. I used to produce marginally acceptable work using oils and acrylics, but give me a pencil and I’ll make a mess. MS Paint, however, is a miracle worker. My husband asked for two or three aliens, and I’ve already emailed him thirty-one.
The key to my success, I believe, is that I don’t care what the finished product looks like. I don’t have to care. Those puppies look like what I say they look like.
Anyway, I’m posting some of the portraits. My husband gave me permission to use them. The aliens didn’t, but I doubt that will be an issue. As I understand it, they consider blogging passé and so will probably never see their likenesses here.
The first alien pictured–its name is Coy–and the second, Lmao, have already made their debuts at Alien Resort. The others might be introduced later, depending on which ones the CEO chooses to put before the public.
Now. Wasn’t this better than literary criticism?
See what the denizens of Alien Resort say to one another when they think we’re not listening at https://alienresort.net/cartoon-gallery/.
I’m home from my travels, so everything above set in present or future tense has now shifted to past.
1. The resemblance of any of the aliens pictured here to spiders, bugs, dinosaurs, penguins, snakes, a coil of ribbon, a certain mouse, or anything else un-extraterrestrial is purely in the eye of the beholder.
2. I didn’t really scrap-scrap the pieces about Shel Silverstein and cows. I scrapped the plans to post them. I’m not about to scrap more than 2000 words of anything.
Kathy Waller writes crime fiction and whatever else she has a mind to. She has published stories in Austin Mystery Writers’ anthology MURDER ON WHEELS and at Mysterical-E. She blogs at Telling the Truth, Mainly, and at Austin Mystery Writers, and edits the Sisters in Crime Heart of Texas chapter news blog. At present she is as mad as all get-out because the first thousand words of a story she’s working on disappeared from a certain cloud thingie and doesn’t look like it’s coming back.