Friday, 5 February 2016

Bold and brave

Hi there and Happy Friday!

It's scary being a writer.

I'm not talking about writing things like non-fiction or technical material. No, I'm talking about fiction.

Why?

Simply because when you're writing factual stuff, you have research behind you, sources to cite and real information. Your work is based on solid foundations - it's impersonal.

Fiction is different. Regardless of the genre that you write, the material comes from somewhere within you; a part of your soul is in that work. To then put it out there, in the public domain, is terribly daunting.

What will people think of me? Will it change their perceptions of who I am? Will people confuse me with my characters?

These are questions that run through my head whenever my work goes public because fiction writing can be so ... oh I don't know ... revealing perhaps?

When I'm not writing novels, I write technical material and financial articles. These are difficult; I must be sure of my facts, I must correctly cite my sources, I must report the details as they are without giving an opinion. Yeah, this is hard - sometimes really hard.

So you'd think, that writing fiction where I don't have any of those restraints, would be comparatively easy. But it's not. Writing fiction, for me, is a very personal thing because no matter what or who I am, my readers will always try to link me with my characters.

A friend of mine who writes erotica has been putting off publishing her work because she wonders what people will think. Honestly, she's being creative so she really shouldn't worry about that, but she does and I can understand it.

When I first began writing the Counterpoint series - companion stories to my novel Torn, I worried about that myself. These stories are by no means erotica, but they are based around a character whose exploits are a little more out there than those of my other characters.

Patrick drinks, he swears and he enjoys an adventurous sex life. To write about these things has been fun - even if I do catch myself blushing sometimes. They're probably rather tame stories compared with some but we already know I can be a bit of a fuddy-duddy!

In any event, writing fiction can be very scary. Little wonder many writers - whether they're poets, novelists or even songwriters - hide their work away refusing to ever release it publicly.

That is writing for the pure enjoyment of writing! How many brilliant pieces will never see the light of day?

Pity isn't it?

So what if not everyone likes your work! So what if people think you're a bit odd by what you've written! Never stopped Stephen King from writing freaky stuff, or George Orwell, or ... hang on. I was about to say so what if you don't know how to structure a sentence, but I think I'll stop there.

It's very important to me that you can write. If you've followed this page for any length of time you'll know that I'm a grammar/punctuation/spelling pedant. If these are not your strengths, don't be put off, just acknowledge there are gaps and go do a course!

I found this Online Writing Training school after a quick search. I don't know anything about it but it doesn't hurt to look. There are plenty of others out there too!

Therefore, until next week - writers (almost) everywhere - be bold! Be brave! Stand up and declare, I am a writer! Then get that work out there.

Here I am, boldly and bravely inflicting Inviolate on an unsuspecting public!

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