Last Day of School: A Summer to Write


One of the few perks of being a public school teacher in Oklahoma is summer vacation.  I have a routine that I go through to unwind from the busy schedule of teaching high school students.  It follows:

  1. Read The Lord of the Rings.
  2. Go swimming with my children.
  3. Start working on a new writing project.

This year will be different, however, as I have several outlines either finished or nearly finished for at least three novels.  I just completed my third novel, Come Apart, and will be having a book signing on May 31st at the Norman, OK Hastings from 3-5pm.  I don’t know if I want to dive in to another novel just yet.

In January Literary Juice, an online magazine, published my short story Rust, which is one of many short stories I have been toying with for several years.  I write short stories to feel out ideas I might have for novels.  If the short story doesn’t pan out, I usually don’t pursue it as a full length novel.  Come Apart started this way, but then I realized that I would need much more to tell the story fully, and eventually it took a direction I did not intend originally.  The direction was very good, but some of my short stories have not gone any further than 1500 words.

I have decided that for the summer I will put together several short stories into a compendium to publish sometime in September.  It will give me a chance to relax from long form novels for a while, and see if the three outlines I have put together can sustain themselves beyond the 1500 word maximum.

The point is, it is necessary for a novelist to write, even if the writing task is not writing novels.  Writers need to keep themselves sharp, and if you haven’t written in a while, you need to get back to it.

Writers write.  Period.  If you are doing anything else, not writing every day or every other day, you are not a writer.

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2 thoughts on “Last Day of School: A Summer to Write

  1. I am just finishing reading the Lord of the Rings again. I decided to read the trilogy while I finished up my last semester of seminary, in order to anchor all of the academic reading and writing I was doing with great fiction. Thanks for posting, and blessings on your summer’s work!

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