There is a common occurrence in the life of a casual writer which I like to call a “so much for that” moment. At such times aspiring authors begin with a fresh idea having all the enthusiasm in the world only to discover that this idea was not meant to be seen through to completion.
This is one of those times.
As somewhat of an amateur writer I was riveted with the initial idea for this short story, though I quickly discovered that it really couldn’t go anywhere. For that reason, I suspect I shall never finish it and have been forced to respond by simply sitting back from my keyboard and sighing, “Well, so much for that.”
But because I like the idea I began with and have access to the internet I can at least give myself credit here for having though of something clever in the first place even though I lack the creative energy to complete it.
The idea is that i- or, rather, the narrator- am describing having not been born. By this I don’t mean being in the womb but actually not existing yet. You might like to call it the “twinkle-in-the-eye” stage of humanity. As something of a draft title I’ve been calling this permanently incomplete story “Before I Was”. Anyway, this is the introductory paragraph:
“Caught in that inconceivable space between “unthought-of” and “I am”, I watched or rather seemed to know, the happenings of the family which would soon be my own. How soon I could not know, but the very vapor of my awareness was cause enough to tell that my coming was certain. There was no anxiousness, no discomfort, no impatience in that immeasurable time when time itself went unknown and unmeasured, but I was sure that I should love to be. All was peaceful patience for me as I considered the comings and goings I would one day take part in, but regardless, I could not help but dread my own gestation. There was no telling what it would be like before having experienced it oneself, but it sounded frightfully drawn out. Although, I reconsidered in my immaterial self, to experience anything must be lovely."
As I’m sure you’ve already guessed, the problem here is that not much can happen in this “twinkle-in-the-eye” stage of life (or maybe “pre-life”?) but I had some vague ideas such as the first impression of ones mother…?:
“In my indistinct self I could distinctly make out her lips all full of smiles saved up for me. I discerned her eyes- they were bright with shimmers and wondered if one of them might be myself. And in some way yet unknown to me I overheard her voice. I supposed you would call such a voice “warm” -for though I couldn’t say with any certainty that I understood the idea of warmth (or, for that matter, “say” anything at all), some sensation of thought affirmed to me that anything which sounded so comfortable must be warm.
“You know,” mother was saying, “I don’t think we’ll ever stop hoping for a little boy.”
Boy? I considered. A boy did she say? I hadn’t any idea what “boy” was but it certainly didn’t sound like me. It seemed unlikely however, that I should know better than my own mother. Or perhaps there had been some mistake and this mother was supposed to have a boy and belong to someone else. Oh my, they must be mistaken! But could such a mistake be corrected?”
Anyway, I’m obviously never going to take this anywhere so I’m posting it in full expectation that if anyone even makes it to the end of this blog they will respond by promptly switching off their computer and saying, “Well, so much for that.”
And I give you full permission to do so….