In youth, my younger brother and I were enacting the scene from the Karate Kid. You know the one. I was Daniel-san. It turned out that Miagi was correct – ‘if do right no can defend’. My brother dropped like a rock from sky. There was blood, some pleading to keep this hush, general childlike CYA.
Karate Kid probably cemented my fascination with martial arts and all things Asian. It started, however, with Bruce Lee and then David Carradine and Sunday Morning theatre and continued through to present day. Even Chuck Norris gets some props from me though he is a lesser idol. I’ve searched for the word like anglophile or Francophile to equivocate being a lover of all things Asian. As far as I can tell there isn’t one.
I get that Asia is big and creating such a word would be near impossible due to the diversity of the area alone. Still there isn’t a country that helps make up that continent that doesn’t command my fascination on some level. I don’t know what it is but I’ve passed it to my kids both of whom seem ready to fly the coop to go live there, provided my SO and I go with them.
Which brings me to my current WIP which is undergoing substantial reconstructive plastic surgery. If I hadn’t hired an editor I might have dropped it because inside of my current WIP is a character that I can’t wait to write the story for and I can already feel that story is going to be one of those stories where everything falls into place. It makes me eager.
What is good about having this obligation to the money I’ve spent and the lady who’s helped me is that taking the time to rewrite, even a story I may not have been totally invested in, is a terrific exercise for someone like me. It is forcing me to make something that’s not bad into something really good. And it is taking time because, unlike the first draft where I write like I’m drowning, a rewrite like this takes commitment. It takes willingness to focus and organize and it takes the creative juices to flow.
I was recently gifted a subscription to Master Class. One of the first ones I started was David Cedaris and I was hooked after the first five minutes. My original plan was to listen to a bunch of them in the bite sized files these talks are offered up. With Mr Cedaris I binged him looking forward to what was next. One of the big take aways was his process. We all know edit/rewrite and then do it again and again. He took us through one of his essays and the stark creative difference between the first draft and the final draft was jaw dropping.
I knew after hearing that I would stick with this current story and take it through this process. Sticktuitiveness. It was/is a business catch phrase, one of those ones we all hate and eye roll when we hear. I like perseverance better. Catch phrases are like petting a cat wrong to me. They raise every hackle I have.
It’s going to take time and the ripe juicy apple that I want to eat is hanging so damn close but if I do this now with this project, develop the discipline and ability to turn a meh story into a great one, what could happen when I finally get to that low hanging fruit?