There are many tasks in this world that suck. Taxes…mowing the lawn…writing a “brief summary” of a novel. Hell, I’d rather go back and do my taxes again. But not mow the lawn. Never that.
No matter how hard you try, however, you’ll get stuck writing a summary of your story. Well, putting a few books on the bestseller list can probably get you out of it, but for the rest of the writer-ish universe that task hangs over every story.
I hate doing summaries, almost as much as I hate doing a synopsis. Oh, I know they’re necessary…actually, I don’t know that, it’s just that people I trust have told me they’re necessary. Personally I think it’s just the universe fucking with me.
Remember when I mentioned Little Red Riding Hood isn’t necessarily about a little girl in a red hood?
On one level Wrath & Tears is the story of a teenager out for revenge…and if I’m doing a short plot-based summary, that’s what I’m supposed to talk about. Nothing about Oz’s unrequited love for his straight friend. Nothing about fear and loss, or the suffering, despair and inequities society has heaped on the boys. Nothing about a story of love and betrayal and suicide. Nothing about what the book is really about.
Nope. It’s “this happened, then that happened.” This task does not make me happy…this task makes me go for the single-malt, as a matter of fact.
Trust me on this: drinking scotch does not make the process any easier! It does, however, tempt me to throw in the story’s final image (quoting from an older post) of “one broken kid holding the body of another, far more broken, kid” just to see what kind of reaction I’d get.
Yeah, that’d work great.
Wrath & Tears is Oz’s book as much as Connor’s, but good luck getting that across in five hundred words or less…
Okay, the pity-party is over.
Oh, I’m still irritated…but half the reason I’m irritated is because I’m doing shit like summaries and the like. I’m working, but I’m not writing. Nothing will change until I fix that particular problem. But I still haven’t made up my mind…
Remember: no good can come of a writer without a story to write.
“Sad and pathetic, you are,” Yoda said to me.
Actually, what he said was, “Get over it” but I heard what I wanted to hear. Welcome to my life.