I think I got an idea that was meant for someone else.
A short story I was working on has hit a snag. Well, more than a snag. I’ve got a zero draft done, and it’s not terrible.* It was on track. But as I was slogging through a round of edits earlier this week, I finally realized something.
I don’t want to tell this story.
That’s a weird feeling: looking at something you’ve made and having no other thought than I don’t care. As someone who frequently gets far too obsessed with stories and characters, it was profoundly unsettling. Like cracking open a perfect egg to find that it’s just an empty shell. Surprise.
It’s also odd that I let it get that far. There have been stories I didn’t care to tell before, but they’ve very rarely gotten past the initial idea stage. After spending a little time together, I realized we weren’t a good fit and let it go. Or I couldn’t get through an entire draft before running out of idea juice. But to get all the way to a completed draft is….unusual.
It’s not that it’s a terrible idea. It’s really not; trust me when I say that I know a bad idea when I see one. It’s just not mine. I have virtually no interest in telling this story. And, more than that, I will do a bad job at telling it. Any reader would be able to sense the apathy. It’s practically dripping off the page, all grey and boring.
I figured this out when I was doing everything else on my to do list in an effort to avoid it. And I mean fucking everything. Laundry. Organizing my digital files. Cleaning the kitty boxes. You know something is not on your favourites list when you’d rather scoop up another species’ shit than do it.
I’m going to have to let this one go, I think. It’s not mine. And it deserves someone who will look after it properly. Someone who can tell it right. Not the half-assed, disinterested pass I’m giving it. And it’s not like I don’t have other stuff to work on.
So, free to a good home: one story idea.
*Not any more terrible than any zero draft, I mean.