I've been told something by people who have read both my blog and my stories. Essentially, they said that my blog entries are very free-flowing and fun, but my stories feel more, well, "forced". There's an important point there. While pumping gas, I broke it down and here's what I came up with.
There is a part of me that creates stories. Let's call it YeffCore, or the Muse, or just StoryTeller. When StoryTeller creates stories, they are translated through another part of me called, say, CraftMaster. CraftMaster takes the raw story from Storyteller and applies the lessons of craft to it, along with watching grammar, sentence structure, and stuff like that.
This is the effort to take the story on the page and get it as close as possible to the story in my head. But my current struggles with craft and integrating lessons I've had on craft (at VP, at cons, when talking to pros) make the story feel "forced".
CraftMaster is also involved in blog entries but takes a pretty light touch there, mainly around grammar and sentence structure (and even then, isn't too strict on those). I think this is where the free-flowing, playful nature of blog entries comes out. It's closer to the Storyteller core. There's less pressure to make it match the "blog entry in my mind", so less shaping occurs by the CraftMaster.
I'm realizing that one goal of learning and practice is to get CraftMaster up to a level where it can shape stories but still retain the essence of the Storyteller core. Or maybe I tell CraftMaster to take it easy and let the story come out, then worry about the shaping later.
Lurking in the background is the EvilEditor. EvilEditor is the voice that says "all this is crap, this is horrible, this is terrible, why would you submit garbage like this, you are doomed, doomed." EvilEditor jumps in now and then, but usually the other two can beat it back into the shadows. When the time comes for revision, however, EvilEditor is right there in the forefront and often blocks revision. That's a problem for another day.
Of course, riding herd over all of this is the TaskMaster. TaskMaster makes sure things get done, when it's not off doing whatever it does on its breaks (and where *does* TaskMaster go, anyway?). Now, TaskMaster is here and telling me it's time to get back to the work. So I will.