I thought I’d better give a quick update on my progress so far for my Literary Mix Tapes Eighty-Nine piece (just in case any of my stalkers – mostly family (!), decide to call me out on it).
As I outlined in an earlier post, I received the music prompt of Martika’s Toy Soldiers which editor Jodi Cleghorn, drew from a hat. I was stoked to get this particular song as, I’m slightly ashamed to admit, I loved it (just a little). The song has had its fair share of analyses from fans over the years; some say it was Martika’s way to reach out to a friend who was addicted to cocaine, others say it was a simple love song a la Romeo and Juliette – unrequited love etc. I’m of the view that the lyrics and the accompanying film clip, speak to me of young, unattainable love. However it also shouts addiction and craving, which is appropriate for either interpretation of the song.
To begin with, I contemplated working the literal angle heard in the lyrics (toy soldiers), weaving them into one of the many political and military upheaval’s that occurred in 1989, perhaps incorporating love in some way. A bit obvious, in hindsight, so I’m rather pleased to say that my LMT89 draft (which is with beta readers right now) has avoided any major historical event, worldwide or closer to home, and found a ‘simpler’ way to incorporate the song and its addictive undertone. I hope. From the feedback I’ve received so far, it does (phew!) and the small-scale story I have crafted, is a simple yet sweet ‘coming of age’ (hopefully not in a clichéd way) tale, set in a small Australian beach town in 1989.
I admit, I originally had grandiose plans of a rich historical piece that thoroughly linked to my song prompt. Realistically, it was never going to happen. Especially given this is my first stab at publishing and its a collection of short stories each with a 1500 word limit! That said, I have plans to one day write historical fiction, combining my love for the genre itself and my obsession with particular era’s of world history – ONE DAY!!
But for now, I wait patiently for my last beta reader to give me some feedback – there were a few niggly things I hoped he/she might help with (with their infinite beta reading powers of awesomeness), which will then mean I can get on to submitting for my first ever published piece. Excited!!