I had a short story written for today. It was clever but I found I couldn’t abide my own writing. It may have been clever but it definitely wasn’t coherent. I tried rewriting it, I tried to salvage it, I tried to completely write another tale where I could use the phrase veni vidi vici and make it mean something but none of my attempts were successful.

This exercise taught me something I didn’t know I needed taught and that is to understand when to let go of a piece of writing because it just isn’t working. In the beginning I had assumed it was just my self-critic being over critical but the more I read the story, the more it refused to come together. It was like I was trying to hold water in my bare hands. It kept slipping.

Then I thought of going through my numerous WIPs to see if I could salvage something from there for today’s post but I was too irritated to really have this work.

Google was the obvious next choice in my mission to “save the V post” as I searched for the origins of the phrase veni vidi vici. Maybe that would spark a thought? Though I learnt that this phrase was used by Julius Caesar to inform his friends back home of his decisive triumph in battle – veni (I came) vidi (I saw) vici (I conquered), it did not spark any thoughts.

Suchita came, she saw but whether or not she has managed to conquer this post is still up in the air.

Incidentally, Julius Caesar – JC as we called it in school – was a Shakespearean play we read in ninth and tenth. It was our first introduction to Elizabethan English and all the good stuff of metaphors, similes, personifications, alliteration, etc. It was also the time when my friends and I mass fell in love with the character of Marc Anthony. Especially after we read his speech of friends, Romans, countrymen, lend me your ears. And the clever way he used language and words like calling Brutus honourable to turn the mob that had until then firmly been in Brutus’ court, to his side.

Words are magical but sometimes, they don’t make sense. It’s hard then to let go of stories that come from somewhere inside your being but no matter how you try to hash them, they don’t work. I have had quite a few plots that have gone kaput on me in the past one year. It’s a great reminder that art like life doesn’t always walk a straight and narrow path. I love that these broken plot threads randomly meander into something else I’m writing and there, they find a home and peace, held within the arms of another story, character or detail.


Connecting this post to #BlogchatterA2Z. To read other posts, check Theme Reveal 2022: Without Prearrangement.


PS: If you like how I write and would like to read more, I have 2 ebooks on Kindle – both free if you’re on Kindle Unlimited. You can read more about the ebooks here.


Photo by Teddy Yang

10 thoughts on “Veni vidi vici

  1. Oh, this happens a lot with me. You’re not alone, my friend. There are discarded and forgotten poems and stories in my ‘unpublished’ folder and even when I’m writing, I delete and rewrite entire chapters, pages and paragraphs because as you we need ‘ to understand when to let go of a piece of writing because it just isn’t working’

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Beautiful post Suchita. This happened a lot to me during this A to Z because I was writing for daily poetry prompts. Like my latest poem on i vs I, there was this lingering thought but put in words it didn’t make so much sense as it did in my mind. But unlike you I didn’t abandon it. It sits on the blog, uncomfortably. Maybe Ill get back to it in May.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Love the thought of i vs I. Yes distance can help. And one day it’ll come together – happened with a short story of mine. Other times, even a rewrite, or reducing the scope of it also doesn’t help. It’s a circus 🤣

      Like

  3. Suchita, I’ve always thoroughly enjoyed your style of writing and it warms the cockles of my heart to read you.

    The last lines resonated. I have been bashing myself to write, I know the words will spill out when I do; but it all seems to go to naught the last week and a half. Tomorrow is a new day.
    Gotta make it happen; without that twisted plot; or not!

    Liked by 2 people

  4. Suchita, what you have said here is so true about certain stories not getting anywhere because they do not gel within us. I have always kept these aside, and strangely enough, they do meander into other pieces of writing, and enhance them. Is that kintsugi, do you think? Enjoyed how you made Veni, vidi, vici work for you magnificently!

    Liked by 2 people

  5. One of the first things I learned about writing is when to let go. So many times, our stories sound wonderful in our minds, and yet, when one puts them down, they may not work, at all!
    I loved your last lines about how broken plots points meander into something else and find their home!

    Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

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

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com 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