Short story: Driving against the sunrise (unedited)

Sunlight was just showing up on the horizon. Daybreak was about to happen and the clouds were holding back the sunrise for just a few more moments. It was a magical time of day. A world of different possible futures existed at that moment. Driving behind a windshield enclosed in a car it was like watching a painting. Things never really felt fully tangible during the morning commute. It happened every day. These things happened every day all over the country. Maybe this one was going to be the best ever or it might just be another in a long string of things that happened. Every little bit of color that appeared on the horizon took a second to process. It was something that should be magical, but it was just going to be gone. These things never lasted very long. Most of the time it happened without any appreciation or anybody documenting it for posterity. In some ways the moment was fleeting without purpose or necessity. Maybe this round of daybreak would be more impactful. Today just might be the day where things happened. It just might be the day where things turned around from promising to perfection.

Somebody in the distance was shouting, “next.” Maybe they were just shouting something that sounded like that word. It was really had to tell, but it was enough to make me wonder exactly what was going to be next. The day started off with a drive to work and from there it was mostly the same thing with different people every day. Sometimes you appreciate the routine and sometimes you start thinking that maybe more would be better. The idea of more remains powerful to some extent. Opening the door to what might be possible is highly dangerous in terms of potential disappointment. Imagination quickly can outpace the possible. Sometimes the things that are happen in your routine are good enough. They are not just past perfect or anything, but they are good enough to make a go out of it. That is the real questionable part of planning to move on and do something else. It really does discount the value of the things that are happening now. Comparing a vision of a perfect possible future to the contemporaneous value of the now means knowing the moment and the possible. Boiling it down to just that thought could be enough to help figure some things out. It might be a good roadmap for that type of consideration or it could just be a distraction from plunging forward with a single minded purpose that gets things done.

Most of the drive was now over and the sunrise still stood off to the side now. Turning down this road was enough to put the morning light show off to the side of the car. It was out of my main field of view. Maybe that was an analogy for something that should be apparent or maybe it was literally what happens when you turn down this road. Roads are build in a variety of directions and some of them go directions other than East or West. Parking would be easy enough at this hour. Maybe that first deep breath outside the confines of car would be full of the smell of fresh cut grass. It could be of something else entirely. Maybe some standing water from that ditch had built up a smell of some type over night. Either way at this point the sunrise no longer seemed to be drawing my attention. All of my thoughts were focused on that first breath. Pretty much the entire day now rested on the positive or negative value of that moment. Sure that might seem like a reach, but it was about to happen. It was about to happen with one good pull on the car door handle…

Working on my short story writing skills one day at a time

Writing on my 34 inch monitor is not working very well for me today. That just might be an understatement. It is not working at all. Maybe getting back to basics and writing using my ASUS Flip C101P Chromebook will fix things. Perhaps having a screen that large is just making it hard to focus on the written word. This screen is about 10.1 inches with a resolution of only 1280×800. So far it seems to be working. Writing is happening. It is happening in a slow and somewhat stunted way, but it is starting to happen with a greater degree of depth and frequency. At some point during the course of this 30 minute writing session or typing on this keyboard my plan is to stop thinking and just open my mind the world being created. That pretty much means that today is going to veer off in the direction of a short story. Writing a whole novel (autocorrect had level instead of novel; that made me chuckle) seems so far away from where my thoughts are today, but maybe just maybe waxing philosophical about the snowflakes falling outside will inspire some type of short story. It will inspire some type of prose that could string together something into something interesting.

My fountain pen was at the ready. Now the keyboard has become my writing tool of choice. Outside my window it went from a bit of morning rain to dropping some very large snowflakes today. We shoveled the driveway twice today. The snowflakes are still falling and might continue doing that until late tonight. My thoughts for the briefest moment drifted to the idea of writing a novel about the concept or more boldly put bewildering process of being grown-up. It happens, but it is one of those things that make shows up without any fanfare and never really drifts away. It only brings more and more rules with it to form up a foundation of acceptable things. Distorted by my vision of the way things were being grown-up remains something that generally is hard to do. That just might be the central thesis of the rest of the words that would be written in this novel. As a premise it is not the worst way to start writing about things. Some things keep changing and a lot of things just sort of remain the same day after day.

Listening to a few more audiobooks

Today I listened to the last few minutes of the Moneyball audiobook on Google Play Books. Over the last couple months I have been listening to a ton of Michael Lewis books. Maybe it was the writing style that pulled me into this pattern or maybe it was the right content at the right time. During the course of searching to see if Michael Lewis had a Twitter account a thought stood out. It was the idea that maybe people avoid social media and just focus on writing every day are going to be more productive. That thought just stuck with me and I thought maybe productive people are just productive. More or less this was a thought derivative of the winners win principle. Writers tend to engage in the practice of writing. Some people are super productive and others are simply not going to ever achieve that degree of production.

Photo of an audiobook playing

Beyond the depths of that first overwritten passage

Opening with a witty barrage of prose might be a good way to get going. Beyond the depths of that first overwritten passage a nugget of truth might be hiding. Perhaps during the course of those moments when first filling the page something forms or builds out of nothing. Each moment follows on the legacy of the last. Echoes of promise and unfulfilled momentum shake a little bit of truth from what was left. Building out that start be it a fall start or a truly epic passage of pose the folly of overwriting always exists. The truth always turns out to be that potential outpaces performance. Every perfect possible future opens the door to something truly great. Unfortunately, each of those doors tend to have a certain commitment or consequence. Taking that first step toward a future that could be perfect might not unfold as a perfect journey.

Maybe this is the moment I break out my fountain pen and write some lyrics or some form of poetry. That might end up being more and more unlikely as the typing keeps going. Tonight I’m stuck between listening to music while writing for a bit or maybe having Netflix on in the background. Tomorrow I took the day off work. It will be a day devoted to working on something. That is the big question right now… what exactly tomorrow will hold is a secret that has been kept from all my momentary considerations. Tomorrow is a day right now full of possibility. Every door is open and every moment could be a moment that opens the floodgates of productivity. For me right now the potential of tomorrow probably outpaces anything that will actually happen. Somewhere in that thought is a seed of truth. Maybe it is a honest one with the potential for more.

Tomorrow I’m probably going to focus in on using my Google Cloud Platform (GCP) account to begin work on an automated newsletter based on a custom build natural language processing neural network. Sure that might seem like a lofty enough goal for a single day of fun, coding, and a few meals of Soylent. Maybe I’ll start watching the Alien quadrilogy and work on some coding in the cloud. Yeah —- that sounds like it will be desired direction for tomorrow. Things could devolve from that nobel path to an afternoon of Warren Zevon records, but we will have to wait for the moment to know it.

Perfect for the weight of words

These moments of peace between the chaos of life are perfect for the weight of words. Left idle for even a moment my mind turns toward a racing condition. Thoughts build up and before you know it. Stacks of ideas end up competing to be at the forefront my thoughts. That is where things end up for the most part. Converting those ideas into some type of outcome requires taking things to a conclusion. It requires finishing things. Most major writing tasks are not single serving endeavors. They cannot be completed in one major writing session. Maybe that could be the natural end of a series of creative sessions. A few different sessions could produce something of merit. They could result into something of value. Turning ideas into a final draft or at least some type of manageable prose takes time.

Tonight for example… I have one hour right now that could be spent on anything. That one hour really does exemplify the perfect weight of words. Every minute taunts the possible. Each minute counts down toward what could be and quickly separates it from what happened. That is the natural path of things when you sit down to write for an hour and end up reflecting on life, part of the universe, and some things. Those moments of reflection were stole from the perfect possible outcome of an hour of uninterrupted epic prose creation.