Archive for July 22nd, 2011

The Ctrouble with Cthulhus

My name is DL, and I have a problem.

I’ve been aware of this problem for awhile.  Which is good, because I’ve had the problem much longer than I’ve been aware of it.  My problem is that I like to attempt Lovecraftian stories, but when I start down on them I enter into a miasma of filtering and distancing that I try to struggle out of.  But each time I think I’ve gotten my voice into the story, the temptations of the Lovecraft style pull me back down and leave me shouting from the bottom of a well, watching stories shoot by where people seem, and feel, and find, and appear, or appear to seem to feel to find out something that really they should have just found out.

This used to be my writing style for everything.  Bad characters drabbling along through a story that happened around them, all the while writing the equivalent of a making-of documentary, with my camera not focused on the actual action, but on someone else watching the action.  It’s no way to tell a story.

I’ve gotten better.  I’ve learned how to have active characters (force them to be active).  I’ve learned how to create details.  I’ve learned how to get into a story, tell a story in the first or third person, the present or the past tense.  Then I come up with a story that’s vaguely Lovecraftian and BOOM!  Everyone seems to feel things all over again.  And I end up with a story that I frustratingly know there’s a problem with, but not what that actual problem is.

Part of me wants to give up.  To walk away.  To just say I’m never going to have Nyaralathotep slinking his way through stories, have the Mi-Go dissecting my characters brains, or to have unspeakable horrors drive my hero slowly insane until the only options become living with what he has learned or reaching for the cold embrace of the grave.  But I don’t want to give up.  In a way I almost can’t give up.  I have these ideas, I want to write these ideas.  And in the end, its something I have to teach myself to do because all of that filtering is holding captive one of my favorite novels in progress: Conqueror Worm.  My main character seems the CRAP through that book, and it all has to be fixed if I even have any hopes of selling it.


I’ve heard of these groups, but I never thought it would feel so good to get this all off my chest.  I’d always heard the first step towards recovery is admitting you have a problem.  I just never expected this group to be here.  But why do you call yourselves the Esoteric Order?

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