Friday, 14 December 2012

Recycle Old Stuff

A Gentleman of Old Venice; ink and watercolour; Adele C-B 2004.
Rooting out household junk for Sunday's bring-and-buy sale, I came across a few old pieces of artwork plus a very dusty ring-file of old stories.  Most of these are so old the paper they were typed on has gained a yellow tinge.  I started reading through a few of the stories, of course.  My fingers began itching - as they tend to when the writing bug bites - and I ended up re-writing Peter Buddha, a very short tale at just under 900 words, which dates back to 1989.  The edits consisted of deleting redundant words and simplifying a few sentences.  The re-write brought in two extra characters in order to give other peoples' reactions to the unfolding events.  The finished story will probably be added to my next collection of short stories, Dark Waters.
The moral of this post, then, is that it can be useful to hang on to old stories.  Some of them - perhaps lots of them! - won't make the grade but that's not so important.  You can re-write them.  Or you can re-use ideas from within them and create something new.  The trick is not to be too precious about them. 
Anyway, right now my dogs are sulking.  They were waiting for their morning walk but it's pouring with rain here.  At least this has washed away the hoar frost which had turned pavements into toboggan tracks.


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