I sat down this evening to write a piece for Pill Hill Press’ Dark Heroes Anthology. The idea is, of course, to write a story where a stereotypically evil monster/creature is the hero of the story. Sounds awesome right? Definitely!
So I settled on this idea I had for a demon who is cast out of both Heaven and Hell and wanders the earth lonely and tormented. Originally the plan was to make him a vampire, but I don’t want to get stuck in a rut and besides, vampire stories are a dime a dozen these days. Anyway, the plan was this demon would find a ‘lost soul’ – aka, a ghost – and he would be the hero by releasing it. Setting it free. Essentially, saving a soul. Yes, it was a different interpretation of hero, but still – I thought the idea sounded great.
I settled down to write it at around midnight. Plugged my headphones in and got my saddest, most tragic playlist going. Click, click, click I started typing away with the cat curled up on my foot and my husband playing video games beside me. I was happily writing away when I realized the story was going off course. Not quite in the direction I had intended.
I paused for half a second, debating whether or not to straighten it out. But I didn’t want to lose my momentum. As a writer, it’s NEVER a good thing to lose momentum. So I shrugged and typed on. Let the words and ideas flow without check.
By the time I finished (it sits at roughly 1,500 words), I realized my story didn’t come out like I intended. The demon wasn’t a hero at all. In fact, the theme of the whole story twisted from loneliness (my original intention) to regret/remorse and sorrow (the end result). The demon didn’t save the soul. I won’t tell you how it ended (check me out on Facebook if you really want to know…), but it certainly differed from its purposed ending.
Moral of the story? Well…stories have a life of their own sometimes. When you’ve got the inspiration, don’t worry if you deviate from the storyline. Go with the flow, bro. (Can you tell it’s late, I’m starting to make lame rhymes!) Yes, it’s true this story no longer works for the anthology it was intended to be submitted to.
Does that matter?
No, not really. At least not in my opinion. What really matters is that I think I’ve captured a beautiful moment here in this story, even if it doesn’t work for the Pill Hill Press anthology. It satisfied my longing to write a story. It stands complete, although unedited, and ready to be polished and sent off to a magazine that wants to hold it. I cherish the story, as I cherish all my stories. Almost as if it were my little baby. Imperfect, but I love it anyway.
So, I bid you all good night for now. Don’t forget – if your story says go this way…DO IT!