Anatomy of a Story- “After the Wake”

Dear, Avid reader… please bare with me as this feels like it could be a long intro. Don’t worry you can skip it if you like I won’t be offended. For those of you who are interested I hope I can entertain or stimulate you, so to speak! (Author’s note: this definitely turned into a muttering ramble so has been shifted to the appropriate category. I shall now return you to the story and normal service…)

Oh… you’ve read that bit. At least i hope you have as i do give away the plot in this diatribe.

I have a file, just over there (points to the top right of my screen) called ‘Ideas’ and is where I collect those random thoughts that may or may not turn into stories. Of course, some don’t even get inside the file before they are pouring out of my head and onto ‘pixellated’ paper as it were. So a couple of days ago I am talking to a friend and fellow writer and discussing what ideas are ricocheting around my excuse for a mind. Open up the file and fourth down on the list is “After The Wake- (Dollhouse) Lalique” exactly as I’ve pasted it in here. It had been quite a while ago when I had placed it in there and the meaning of the first half was quite apparent. As for the second half… not a goddamn f**king clue!

After the wake: – quite simply a story about comforting the recently bereaved. Let’s face it some widows are just plain hot and as I’m the author so is this one. Sex and death! Wouldn’t be the first time I have gone here though not quite like this one, maybe I have done it more erotically and definitely more immediately and violently.

Sex and death?

It may just be me but having received the tragic news of a loved one’s demise (one of my parents, a good few years ago now) I found that I reacted in a very strange, or so I thought, way. Seemingly, if you believe the psycho-babble, not all that strange or unusual but the bereaved feels generally very uneasy and guilty about it. Basically I was incredibly horny (Hush YOU!!! Okay more horny than usual) by all accounts it comes down to the re-affirmation of life. Death has taken from you and subconsciously the need to procreate; to replace what you have lost becomes paramount. It seems the subconscious doesn’t take in to account birth control and vasectomies (thank fictional higher beings).

Of course the problem with this is the hopefully present and willing partner. If one hadn’t been present, would I have taken matters in hand? Now as I was raised a Catholic that would probably have turned into a very, very unhealthy guilt trip! So there you are with a raging hard-on/ soaking pussy (delete as applicable(or don’t as the case may be)) and your partner, who although they sympathise with your loss, is oddly enough not in the mood. Even if it is the ultimate expression of your shared love! Personally I hope that my children on hearing of my own death have a really, good shag! With different partners that is! You knew that, right? I am a firm believer that if we are all too busy wanking and groping and sucking and fondling and fucking and licking and poking and stroking and fingering we will just be all too tired to do bad things. As my friend puts it… “Masturbate for Peace!”

So, for me, death and sex (preferably not simultaneously although if I was to pick my method of exit from this world…) are not taboo. Okay if it was my partner I lost would I experience the same instinctual response…? Hmmm…? Makes you wonder…

So I digress… you’ll find that from time to time… where was I? Ahh yes… the story, initial idea to be the erotic comforting of a handily nubile recently bereaved widow. Even in the first paragraph, as I was writing it, the story seemed to gain a life of its own. The main character whose viewpoint it is told from changed… maybe even from that first line when I said that the day wasn’t typical and therefore felt the need to add the couplet about the deceased being untypical and ergo the ‘storyteller’ as well. Deceit being a ‘good’ virtue within a story is always fun to write and at present watching a lot of ‘Burn Notice’ on the TV, (a bit of a cliché starting (or ending) at a funeral but that is why they are clichés!) spies seemed a good idea. Of course I’m going to put my own spin on things, you’ll see the dig at high speed car chases and although I didn’t go for a vodka martini, shaken not stirred I still had the character drink vodka to start with, (partly for practicalities as being clear one can always not drink when you are expected to) those that know me are well aware that my preference is whiskey (with an e) straight!

I guess like prey in the wild the idea is not to be seen in the first place as far as I see it. So I steal my ideas from all sorts of sources but here I was talking about the process. What my original thoughts about ‘Dollhouse’ were I’m not sure (again maybe the TV series, so was I thinking of truly false identities or simply a child’s toy) and as for Lalique, a very thin type of decorative glass, who knows. Not I!

Still I have a place for them as detail in the story and I hope it adds depth which in turn sparks the readers mind to fill all the little elements in their own memories that gives them a complete picture.

What else? Well I thought to add rules that a spy might follow and the after the first couple and wondering what order they should come in, I came up with my own unique numbering system. The other thing that has changed very recently (due to this blog) is personally adding pictures that go with the story. I have found this quite hard both metaphorically and physically speaking, so about half way through the story I search for pictures that may suit and remembered one I saw a while back that then inspired a small digression to the story. Now I’m thinking is this putting the cart before the horse or not? Like I said earlier I take my inspirations from all sorts of sources. The story that got me ‘Story of the Year’ award over in the Lusty Library (LL) was totally inspired by the movie ‘Enemy at the Gates’ with Rachel Weiss, Jude Law and  Ed Harris and the then present discussion within the forums of the LL about gun control and the second amendment. So I suppose it doesn’t matter too much if the horse is pushing or pulling as long as the cart moves.

And of course i add the twist to the end of the story… at least not everybody dies this time!


I guess i wonder if mny other writers find that what they start to write can change so much during the process. Not all of my stories metamorphisize quite so much as this one did. I would be very interested to hear comments on this from other authors (and readers if they have an opinion )and hope I haven’t bored you too much.

Keep up the scribbling!


~ by ftfagos on February 19, 2011.

One Response to “Anatomy of a Story- “After the Wake””

  1. You are strange… there is no doubt about that!!! And I do not think you have the ability to be “boring”.

    You told me just a little while ago, “…this story took on a life of its own.” It wasn’t for this one I know, it was for a different one. But… those words ring true.

    A thought stirs in your head. It becomes like a new baby. There is such hope for that idea, uncertainty of what he/she might become one day. You know only one thing. That you- as the father- will do one thing. You’ll do the best you can do with what you have. You are a story teller. The bumps and the bruises along the way, a conversation had with someone that changes something within you… still. The story has a life of its own. And a direction of its own too.

    You might try to control it, but it doesn’t always end up the way you thought it might.

    Afterall… is it not the journey that is the best part of the trip and not the destination????

    For me personally, I go into a story with either a situation I need to sort out, and through the writing it down, I work through it. Or I let a muse sing in my ear, planting an idea and waiting for that perfect first sentence to form in my head, then loose everything sitting before the computer and watching the page count increase. For me… there is some thought that goes into what will happen, but more often than not, my stories have a life of their own.

    You know what I am going to say to this…


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: