Well, four out of the five short story starters are ready, but that fifth one is a bit tricky. It's the only brand new one, a freshly made, from scratch, sword and planet fantasy. Seeing that I wasn't starting with an idea in place, this one is giving me more trouble because, well... it's completely new. I had an idea of where I wanted to take the other stories, concepts for characters and obstacles, but this one? Nothing.
On the other hand, focusing on it has been a strange experience. I've mentioned that the genre conventions tend to eschew factual science and lean heavily on the cheese, so I've been trying to give myself creative license to just... blurt out plot elements and names. Unshackle my brain from the creative restraints I've placed upon it with rigorous world building and consistent logic.
But like a man with a blank canvas and too many paints, I find myself unable to decide what to do with all this freedom. Like a dog unchained for the first time, I'm tenderly stepping forward, waiting to feel the limitations of my craft and genre squeeze tight around my neck, but when there is nothing, I find myself a little afraid. It's unfamiliar. Much like the abilities the Dark Side is a pathway to, this feeling is unnatural.
Or perhaps I'm just overwhelmed. The last time I wrote a story with so little constraints on logic and plot, I was five and it was called Super Gecko. Maybe I just don't know how to write without the constraints of rules and guidelines. Maybe the cheesy nature of the genre is too much for my gruff, grisly writing outlook. And yet, still I endure, pressing forward, like Dorothy stepping into the technicolor land of Oz, overwhelmed and yet awed, desiring to see just a bit more.
This story may not be a masterpiece, but there is something here. Something that is pulling at me with wonderful colors and fanciful names. Something pure. Something from a Saturday morning cartoon. I am scared, but my curiosity cannot be slated until I have finished this quest, written this story, and embraced the cheese. Yes, my friends. You read it here first. Embrace the cheese.
Keep your eyes open for my debut novel, The Paladin.