Added a bunch of stories! There’s 14 in total now. I know there’s more to dredge up, but it’s all several years old, and therefore significantly worse than my present writing. As I went through stories like Black Dog Bark, I couldn’t help but edit some of the more atrocious portions. I’m always afraid my writing gets worse when I don’t write, until I write something new and read the old stuff. I used to write huge sentences. It made the writing feel quicker, to my younger and more vulnerable self, but now I see it’s just cramped. That sensation of claustrophobia in a sentence can certainly be useful, but it’s one of those tools that’s generally advised against for a reason.
Although it is interesting to see how writing priorities change over time. My older stories focus on striking imagery and heights of sensation that border on the hyperbolic, while my newer ones focus more on human relationships. In Death, Coffin-Maker, Death is described as “an ancient boy, long-limbed and hollow-eyed,” nothing more. A year ago, I would’ve gone on for at least two paragraphs about the wisps of darkness that infest the air about him like pestilent insects, or the depths of shadows folded into those black and unfeeling pits he calls eyes. Now I find that sort of extensive description overwhelming most of the time. It’s great for evoking emotion, but it loses meaning and power if everything gets that kind of imagery.
I’m not saying my writing now is better because I’m skimping on that kind of imagery. It’s lovely, and I still think stories like Fear Itself or Myleton Motor Inn benefit tremendously from it. I suppose I’m just glad to see my skills expand to something different, too. Born at Dusk features my first female protagonist, ever. It makes me really happy to see that.
I find myself telling folks I own a business a lot. It’s true, I do. It’s true, it has generated revenue principally through offering tech services and consulting. But it doesn’t feel like a business. At least not in the conventional sense. Maybe that’ll change when I have business cards and start marketing more aggressively. For now, I have classes I need to not fail.