Conversations with my Muse

I’m one of those people who need to come up for air frequently while writing. Usually I need to shift my view or rethink a sentence. Sometimes I need to ask a question, and often the process of deciding the right question gives me the answer.

Today, rather than fill my Twitter feed, I decided to put it here, and post it automatically at midnight.

Would a General tap a pen while making a tough decision?

Make that General Strom, or a general. You’d think proper caps would be automatic by now.

Why do I use long sentences for chaotic action and short for numb introspection?

With his job title, and what we’ve seen him do already, how incompetent can I make him?

I’m too distant again. My arms are cold, too.

Can’t settle into an emotion for her. Need to find a dominant one for this moment, then let it evolve.

What do you call a small kit with comb and toothbrush, maybe some mending equipment. A life-saver for a cadet who has ten minutes to clean up before reporting to a CO.

Okay, this doesn’t fit in the text, but I like the idea. Needs rephrasing.
She once again blessed the soldier who left a grooming kit in the washroom next to the CO’s office. Comb, nail brush, toothbrush, minor first aid supplies, boot polish and a sewing kit. Anything that you could use in ten minutes to make yourself presentable. She suspected it was one of those things that everyone knew existed, and the officers expected you to use, but no one admitted existed. The cadets quietly replaced anything they used, and no one said a word.

Would Hammett really pull out a novel right now? It’s not his shift. Lots of frantic stuff is going on in other offices, but his job is to stay here, watch the dozing prisoner, and monitor communications. Maybe a field manual. Does he teach a course? If so, maybe grade papers.

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2 thoughts on “Conversations with my Muse

  1. In response to your long sentences/short sentences, that’s how it works! Long sentences read faster than short ones, and short ones tend to chop up the flow of action which is how we think when we’re numb.

    Long sentences during chaotic action also help instill the feeling of chaos. Good catch that you noticed you’re doing it. During times of real numbness, try writing entire paragraphs in sentences of seven words or fewer. 🙂

    1. But I thought it was to be the other way around. Long for slow introspection, short for fast action. Nice to know my instincts are better than a) my memory b) where I got the advice in the first place.

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