Stephanie Burgis
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Hooray! I just finished my first all-new short story in 4 months. The idea for this one suddenly hit me when I sat down for a writing session with Dave last Thursday. When I started it, I figured it would probably be a short-short - just a moment of emotional catharsis. Then I wrote the first two scenes and they took up 1,000 words, so I figured, OK, the whole thing would still probably be less than 2,000 words. Then...well, for several days in a row, I kept telling Patrick, "I should finish it today." It turned out to be surprisingly action-y and plot-driven (so weird for me!), with superheroes and supervillains and tragic love of both the requited and unrequited sorts, and it's about 5,500 words, so one of my longest short stories. When it occurred to me, in my second writing session on it, that, if there were superheroes, there really ought to be super-villains, too, my first instinctive reaction was: But I don't write that kind of story! But then I wrote it anyway, figuring it all out as I went along, and I'm hoping that that turns out to be a good thing. I've written fewer stories over the past year than I had for a long while before that, but I'm really trying to stretch myself with each new story and try things I haven't tried I'm hoping that I'll make up in quality what I'm missing in quantity with short fiction nowadays.

No journal posts over the weekend, mostly because I was too busy just soaking in warm, lovely Patrick-home-happiness! He had a wonderful time in Vermont, and the MFA program seems just amazing - I'm now seriously thinking about whether to apply to it in the future, after he finishes his degree - but oh, it's so good to have him home again. :) And it gives us even more interesting things to talk about, since he's writing analytical essays about the books he's reading for the program and making really interesting points about what makes a good opening for a novel, how to find the emotional core of a character's story,'s all really useful for me to think about, too, when I read his essays!

Now I'm listening to a playlist of all the new music I've added recently (which is pretty eclectic: Dusty Springfield's "Son of a Preacher Man" followed by Leonard Cohen's "Suzanne", Edith Piaf's "No, je ne regrette rien", Led Zeppelin's "Stairway to Heaven", Simon & Garfunkel's "A Hazy Shade of Winter", and then Samuel Barber's "Adagio for Strings", which I'm listening to right now, followed by Schubert's Piano Trio in E-Flat, Moby's "In This World", and many, many more...). Later this morning I might go out with a friend to the Borders cafe, and at some point I'll have to finally start researching citizenship issues (which I've been putting off for months out of sheer apathy - must get organized about it!). One of the nicest recent changes for me is that, in Patrick's new half-time schedule, he only works full days on Mondays and Tuesdays (and only half-days on Wednesdays), so I'll be getting much more time with him every week, even though we'll both be working on different things while he's at home. I'm really looking forward to it.

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