Thursday, March 10, 2016

Green Monster (Carrot Ranch Flash Fiction Challenge)

Reading Kindle Scout novels from brilliant new authors can be a mixed blessing. Yes, these are books I got for free by nominating them (if selected), or for a tiny price (if not), and the writers are very good, so I definitely got a great deal. But still...

Reading a successfully written, published novel wakes the monster in my head, the one with green eyes and green warts. I cannot help being jealous of the writer who has reached this goal that I still struggle toward.

This monster has teeth, too. They eat at my confidence, make comparisons with other author's work as I read, always to my detriment. I try over and again to slay the jealous monster, but somehow it survives each attack.

I don't want this poisonous comparison to spoil my reading, nor to defeat my determination to write. But more and more, I have scars from the green monster's bites. Perhaps I can use Charli Mill's Carrot Ranch Flash Fiction Challenge prompt this week to pull the monster's teeth:

March 9, 2016 prompt: In 99 words (no more, no less) write a monster story. You can pick any perspective, even that of the monster. It can be literal or symbolic; it can be heroic or realistic. Think about the shifting roles of what is a monster and who is a monster-slayer. Consider how easily we give the label to others or to fears we can’t name.

My monster deserves no consideration. It must die!

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Green Monster

The monster has teeth that tear at me in the dark. "You're obviously missing something the successful writer needs, or you'd have a dozen books on Amazon now, instead of three partly-finished novels and a co-written memoir, half outline and half disorganized notes in a file-cabinet drawer."

Plugging my ears doesn't help. I close my Kindle, and it hisses again. "That last book was a good one, wasn't it? We especially liked that last phrase you highlighted. Genius, really. Not at all like your stuff."

Only one way to slay this monster: finish the fiction, polish the memoir, PUBLISH!