Five years ago today I wrote the very last revision of my short story “You Must Be.”
I haven’t really written any fiction since. Whilst I have written a few short short stories, mostly to keep a little practice in, fiction writing is something I’ve given up on; my energies are meant to be going into thesis writing and lecture prep.
I miss fiction writing; it’s a lot more enjoyable than my academic work. I tend to write material which could be considered existential in nature; I like to deal with fictions about what it is to be an individual, which is mostly because my intuitions are (and this is odd, given my behaviour) vested in notions of group identity and the primacy of the social organism over the discrete entity (that sounds very pretentious, I know). I keep meaning to go back to it, but the thesis… Well, it gnaws at me.
Anyway. Today, whilst browsing twitter and not doing any real work, I found out about I Write Like. After being told that my blog posts are in the style of Dan Brown (which is oddly appropriate and very displeasing) I decided to try parsing the last bit of long fiction I had written; that, I was told, was in the style of Oscar Wilde (very much a step up, one feels).
Opening up “You Must Be” and scanning through it made me realise just how much I’d like to get back to fiction writing. It also revealed to me that it was five years to the day since I had last done anything to the story. I now really want to do another pass at it.
Anyway, I present it here (as a PDF) in case anyone is interested to read it.
I’m not sure Oscar would recognise it, but he’s dead so it doesn’t matter.