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I Don't Know What To Do...

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  #1  
Old 04-27-2016, 03:56 AM
Mrtickle (Offline)
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Hi guys, as you can see from the title I'm struggling to know what to do with my writing. Basically I used to write a lot of short stories that were surreal and slightly off the wall. They never really contained a plot and were more concerned with mood, atmosphere, strong images and hidden meanings, however they never really fitted a any prose genre.

So then I thought I would start writing my ideas as poems, but people said they read more like prose, which they do!

All I want is to be able to know which form to write in - prose or poetry - because my stories are more like dark dreams with very surreal elements that don't fit poetry or standard prose, here's an example of one of my stories:


On the horizon, the Mojave’s got a golden city appearing to be made of sand. But by the time, Boy, Mom and Pa lay sight on the yellow sign they see stripped structures, wooden frames, and matchstick houses. They drag suitcases along the dusty streets,wearing Hawaiian blue, yellow and red
with legs ready for bed. But there is work for them.

With a knife Pa carves three hawks,in the beam of a dwellings front door.

They sit on the rocky floor, and laugh hysterically at the structure. Opening suitcases full of tools. And begin by sawing the timber from the houses structure, a giant game of Jenga.

But soon their home begins to creek. Its structure now only exists in the architects blueprints. Now firewood and benches.

At dusk, Pa spots a growling coyote roaming the front door. Smashes it with timber. Leaving the wooden post sticking out of its head, like the start of
a fence, they hope passers by know the rest.

At sundown, Boy, Mom and Pa replace the coyote’s growling stomach. They fall asleep, by the fire. But by morning, they suffer, the full weight of the structure.


Thank you for taking the time to read. I've just lost a lot of motivation in my writing because of this problem with getting my writing to fit in.

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  #2  
Old 04-27-2016, 06:10 AM
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Shrug. Its your writing. If you enjoy writing the way you do, stick with it and don't let anyone tell you you cant. Too many people let the rigid ideas of others put them off doing what they enjoy and its a shame. Too much embarrassment and need to conform.
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Old 04-27-2016, 06:14 AM
Mrtickle (Offline)
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That's very kind CandraH, and very true. I've seen many people shot down in these types of forums because their writing or ideas are different, and it's sad that some people frown upon works that don't want to conform.

Thanks again!
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Old 04-28-2016, 01:25 AM
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Don't worry about your writing not fitting in, especially on this site.
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Old 04-28-2016, 03:59 AM
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thanks Gaines!
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Old 04-28-2016, 08:51 PM
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Hi Mrtickle.

I love putting surreal elements in my stories. But carefully, and inside a real story.

The problem with surrealism, to my mind, iis usually there's no frame of reference tor the reader. For instance you could have a story about someone slipping LSD in someone's drink. Once the drug kicks in you can unlease the surrealism. Naked Lunch is like that. Brief moments of reality interrupted with the surreal.

Why don't you try an experiment? Write a regular mainstream flash fiction. Let it sit a couple of days, then do a rewrite and let the surrealsim in. Of course you want keep the references the reader has of actual reality, but I think you'll be surprised that you can be as surreal as you wanna be without confusing the reader. If you don't give the reader a frame of reference they'll throw the story at the wall and it will... ...ooze down the wall slowly, ending in a bloody thumping mess with the busboys stepping over it.

If you do it I'll keep an eye open for it.

And welcome to WB

wrc
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Old 04-29-2016, 12:16 AM
Mrtickle (Offline)
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Ok wrc, thats a good idea! I guess if you do give the reader a jumping in point where things are normal then hit with surrealism it makes it an easier transition to the weirder elements of the story.

Thanks for the advice!
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Old 04-30-2016, 12:50 AM
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I was wondering how to bring in fantasy without spoiling the story I am trying to tell. WRC, your advise helps.
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Old 07-04-2016, 08:52 PM
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Hi Mrtickle,

I think I have a similar issue that I'm working through! You might want to look into some stream-of-consciousness writing, like stuff by James Joyce and Gertrude Stein. It's true that surrealist writing is often less reader-friendly than other genres. Whether this is a problem or not depends on what your values are as a writer. Personally, I think the snippet that you presented was easy enough to follow because you gave a lot of space to breathe through paragraph breaks. The repeating imagery also helps. It read to me sort of like, well, prose-y poetry. That's fine.

Don't feel like you have to give an excuse for the surrealism if you don't want to. If it's part of a blatant "it's all a dream" or "this is what happens when you do drugs" narrative, then it's not very surreal anymore, is it?

Last edited by Unpredictabloo; 07-04-2016 at 09:18 PM..
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Old 07-05-2016, 06:06 PM
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tickle consider the old saw, form follows function. I once wrote a parable very similar in it's form and length to those found in the Christian bible. I had no especial desire to be a writer of parables, but it was the correct form for the message I wished to convey to a particular person. Writing is a means, not an end. Know the end, and shape your means accordingly.
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Old 09-10-2016, 08:22 PM
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Originally Posted by Mrtickle View Post
That's very kind CandraH, and very true. I've seen many people shot down in these types of forums because their writing or ideas are different, and it's sad that some people frown upon works that don't want to conform.

Thanks again!
No. The sad part is when new writers believe "them".
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