Just Practicing My Craft

20 Apr

Don’t be concerned as you read this. I’m simply practicing something that’s been kicking around in my head. Maybe it will make it into a story one of these days. I shared this on the HP website, so if you’ve already seen it, I apologize in advance.

I remember thinking, there’s no way this turns out well.

Have you ever experienced that? You’re suddenly faced with a situation, a decision, a fork in the friggin’ road, you take a moment to ponder, your neurons engage, your options flash by in a millisecond, the computer between your ears comes to a conclusion, and that conclusion is nope, no way this turns out well no matter what the hell I do.

That’s where I was two months ago, a knock at the door, me on my fourth beer of the night, turn the tv off, get up off the couch, open the door and there she was, breathtaking, a catch-of-the-breath beauty, raven hair flowing over her shoulders, green eyes illuminated by the porch light, her exhales pluming in the nighttime cold, maybe five-six, maybe one-twenty, hard to tell with the bulky clothing.

She didn’t raise her head enough to look directly at me, choosing instead to keep her head bowed, raising only her gaze, an odd gesture I thought at the time.

And my first thought, the aforementioned there’s no way this turns out well.

Such a strange thing to think, faced with loveliness, nothing out of the ordinary happening on the street, nothing at all to trigger that thought, and yet there it was, harkening back to the cave man, hunter-gatherer of yesteryear, trusting instincts fueled by life and death experiences, fight or flight, choose right or become a meal for others.

There’s no way this turns out well.

I should have listened to that voice.

Why do I write random scenes from a non-existent short story?  I’m just practicing my craft.  “Use it or lose it,” the doctors will tell you. Don’t let muscles atrophy, and don’t let your writing skills go stale.  Use it or lose it.

Will I ever use that opening scene in anything? Maybe, maybe not!  All I know, with any certainty, is it does no harm for me to practice.

Have a great day and thanks, so much, for spending a few minutes with me today.


“Helping writers to spread their wings and fly.”

26 Responses to “Just Practicing My Craft”

  1. Lawrence Hebb April 20, 2021 at 8:34 pm #

    Would I ever use a scene I just ‘sat down and wrote?
    All the time, I can’t help myself, random thoughts come and they get woven into the story!
    I’m working on a scene now where the character I thought was going to be the villain in a book gets bumped off in a novel way,. Why?
    Because my muse said “an even bigger villa is lurking, one they have no idea is there!”
    Have a great day.

    • Billybuc April 21, 2021 at 3:52 pm #

      I love it, Lawrence! I love the randomness of this creative process, and I love hearing how it works for other writers. Thanks for sharing. I hope you are doing well.

  2. Janine Huldie April 20, 2021 at 9:29 pm #

    Always love seeing your random thoughts in your writing. And yes would love to see if you do end using this somewhere else. Happy Tuesday now 😉

    • Billybuc April 21, 2021 at 1:37 pm #

      Thank you Janine! I hope this finds you well. Stay safe! I appreciate you finding the time to read my ramblings.

  3. RasmaSandra April 20, 2021 at 10:56 pm #

    Random thoughts are always kicking around in my head some I can understand and some really bizarre but I believe they always lead to somewhere. I hope you have a great new week and my most bizarre experience for today was finding my friends’ cat Silky on my front porch. It was raining and she was on a wet chair so I placed her inside and she ran out again, Who am I to argue with a cat so I looked around just to be sure she was all right and she was nowhere to be seen not even on the stairs he3ading back down, Knowing I could not have hallucinations I just closed my door and headed back to my laptop. Some short moment late this cat is walking out of my closet, Go figure? So you see every day I slowly but surely can gather material for writing even the most oddest of stories.

    • Billybuc April 21, 2021 at 3:48 pm #

      Rasma, that is absolutely bizarre! That would bother me for days until I found a solution to that cat mystery. lol Thanks for sharing that.

  4. Shauna L Bowling April 20, 2021 at 11:41 pm #

    Bill, I think you used that pic in one of the photo prompts on HP, to which I responded with a fiction piece. I went the paranormal route with it and the other photos you posted along with it.

    It’s always interesting to me to see what rambles around in the minds of creatives and how they perceive what they see.

    You once posted something about the obits you read and how you imagine the lives of the deceased. I thought, “Oh, how morbid! I never read obits of people I don’t know!” But that’s how Bill Holland develops characters for stories. I guess we each have out own methods. That’s why I love creative folks; our muses follow their own drummers.

    • Billybuc April 21, 2021 at 3:47 pm #

      Sha, I have no explanation for how the process works. I’m just happy it does, or I’d think I was walking around crazy! lol At least writing gives me an outlet for all of these crazy scenarios I’m always coming up with.

  5. 1authorcygnetbrown April 20, 2021 at 11:50 pm #

    I have done that too. I have written scenes that really don’t have any place to go except a folder on my laptop. i guess putting them on a blog is better because at least someone gets to see it besides you when you’re cleaning out files.

    • Billybuc April 21, 2021 at 1:36 pm #

      Very true, Donna! It now has life; what I do with that life remains to be seen. Thank you!

  6. My Very Own Writing Coach April 21, 2021 at 1:58 am #

    I’m waiting for the rest of the story. A beginning like that begs to be finished. You knw I’m right!

    • Billybuc April 21, 2021 at 1:35 pm #

      I do know you are right, William! Now I have to prioritize my time and make it happen. Thank you!

  7. Graham Alan Lee April 21, 2021 at 7:51 am #

    Come on Bill. What happens next?

    • Billybuc April 21, 2021 at 1:33 pm #

      Hell if I know, Graham, but I suspect I better find out soon. 🙂 Thanks for reading, my friend.

  8. manatita April 21, 2021 at 11:06 am #

    Well, it’s breathtaking stuff and yes, I read it before. You can add some more and present it here as a Flash Fiction. Anything up to a thousand words are cool.

    Yes, we did a story with the graves as one of the prompts. “Stay bless, I’m taking a rest.”

    • Billybuc April 21, 2021 at 1:32 pm #

      Thank you, Manatita! I suspect it will become a short story in the near future. I’m very happy with the response from all of you.

  9. nightlake April 22, 2021 at 3:29 am #

    I can visualize the scene. If he’d go with his gut feeling, there would be little to tell:)) So what happens after he lets her in? Guess she is a vampire or a villain. Hope to see this scene materialize as a longer story. I have these random thoughts too. A very few of them materialize into stories. I write down some of these thoughts, hoping for inspiration while some are forgotten. Happy to see your post today:)

    • Billybuc April 22, 2021 at 1:40 pm #

      Thank you my friend! It was a fun scene to write. Now I’m waiting for my muse to let me go where it goes from here.

      I hope this finds you well. Stay safe!

  10. Shell Vera April 23, 2021 at 2:43 am #

    One of my favorite things to write is when I just sit and explore a thought.

    • Shell Vera April 23, 2021 at 2:45 am #

      And usually NOT on this phone! Ugh. Sorry about that.

      I really like how you started and ended with the same thought. I like that you explored it and brought it back to the original thought.

      Always love reading your writing, Bill!!

      • Billybuc April 23, 2021 at 1:36 pm #

        I appreciate that, Shell! It’s hard to shake the English lessons I learned from the nuns long ago. 🙂 Sending hugs your way.

    • Billybuc April 23, 2021 at 1:37 pm #

      Me too, Shell! I just don’t make the time to do it very often, and that’s on me. I need to find a way to let my muse fly more often.

      • Shell Vera April 23, 2021 at 4:29 pm #

        I love it when you do!! Have a great weekend.

      • Billybuc April 23, 2021 at 4:37 pm #

        You too, Shell!

  11. Andrea Stephenson April 25, 2021 at 8:20 pm #

    It’s a great scene Bill, vivid and atmospheric. Sometimes you just have to follow a fragment of story even when you don’t know where it will take you.

    • Billybuc April 26, 2021 at 1:35 pm #

      Thank you Andrea! I don’t do as much of this as I should. I actually love writing randomly like this. So glad you enjoyed it.

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