Might be a little early, but I like posting on the 18th of every month as it’s the anniversary day from when I started and it keeps me on track. Making these monthly posts allows me to reflect on the progress I’ve made and acts as a reminder of where I’m going, or rather, where I want to go. It’s a time of self-reflection that keeps me thankful and excited for the future. I hope you have something in your life that promotes happiness, thanks, and giving back. If not, know that you’re not alone.
I, for one, currently live alone. Sort of. I do have a miniature schnauzer who loves to play and go for two walks every single day, which I don’t mind doing (unless it’s 6 am). He’s been a joy in my life that I hadn’t fathomed possible, but pets are special in that way, even if they are a lot of work. I’m thankful for him, for the house we live, for my truck that gets me through the Utah snow so I can go to work (and in and out of my driveway), for my job that pays the bills, and, last but not least, for friends and family. I’m also happy that I have the time and capability to even write this post, and especially grateful for your attention in this insanely busy era of content creation and entertainment availability.
Reach out to me if you feel the need to talk. I have twitter, IG, and email, or comment down below and I’ll get back to you. The world may feel more divided as we get ever more connected, but it’s up to us to change the way we interact in these spaces. There’s a great interview with Substack founder, Chris Best, where they go into this subject in detail. I highly recommend reading it if you haven’t done so already.
Have a great Holiday season. Happy Thanksgiving!
Maintaining motivation for a project is the hardest thing for me, and partly why I delved into short fiction as a means of actually finishing something. Finishing what I’ve started has always been a problem, but learning the different modes of storytelling over the years has opened up so many doors that I hadn’t thought were possible. I’m finally reading Asimov’s short story collection ‘Nightfall’ which is mind-blowing. And, of course, I find a lot of inspiration from H.G. Wells and H.P. Lovecraft.
I heard a great segment on the Stoic Coffee Break podcast about hurdles vs. friction, and that friction is less noticeable than hurdles but when compounded over time—or simply not addressed at all—it can lead to just as much of a hindrance to whatever you consider to be your ultimate goal. So, for example, not having a computer would be considered a hurdle when trying to write, but getting distracted by the internet while on your computer during your supposed writing time is friction.
Being able to address any friction you might have in your life just might help you take the next step to accomplishing your goals. My friction is using my gaming computer while trying to remain focused to write. For me, I get into a mindset when in a physical location. So sitting at my gaming computer puts me into a relaxed, less productive mindset causing immediate friction before I even get started. I’ve always liked going into public spaces like Barnes or Starbucks, because to me it’s like going to a public gym to work out instead of working out at home. Do you have any hurdles or friction that cause you to fall behind on your goals? If so, what do you do to address it?
I’ll keep this part short and sweet since it’s not why I’m doing this, but I do like to be transparent. The Storyletter Substack has reached 54 readers, flying past the first 50 reader milestone. Next stop: 100! Should I do anything special? Let me know in the comments and, if it’s within reason, I’ll consider it.
This short story has changed so much since its inception. I promise I hadn’t planned on being behind schedule when I started, I thought it was going to be 8 chapters, 4 of which had already been written. But as I started to publish it, I began to revise it and add things I thought would be cool. So now, it’s something far closer to the original concept I’d envisioned a couple years ago and a full-on novella length pushing 20 chapters.
Regardless, apologies for the slow releases on the chapters. Chapter 11 is almost done and will be out soon. Keep in mind, its still technically a second draft. After I finish publishing the chapters and do the final revision, I’ll send out to publishers to see if I get any… bites. But I’ll need to finish the thing first. Sigh.
I’ve been thinking a lot about why I’m doing this newsletter and why it should be worth anyone’s time. It’s kind of weird talking about it, but I don’t necessarily want to be famous since I’m very introverted. I mean it’d be neat, but I think what I truly enjoy is getting these images in my head out and showing other people like, “look at this cool thing.”
I guess in some sense it’s expressionism in order to evoke some sort of shared emotional response among people. Or maybe absurdist existentialism where you take this crazy, outlandish idea and play around with how it fits into our daily lives. I’m not really sure. All I know is that I love imagery and using my imagination, and that’s why I have to create things to feel productive.
I titled this section rebranding, not that I’m changing the name of The Storyletter or anything, but I’m still trying out new things as I play around with the Substack format and I don’t want any readers to be caught off guard if, and when, I change it up here and there. I thank you in advance for your patience.
In case you missed it:
Poem - You Were There When… by Winston Malone
Short Story - My Dog Barks At Ghosts In The Park by Winston Malone
Flash Fiction - Three Sisters in the Woods by Daniel W. Davison
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