to write with wonder and wish-fulfillment

I do believe I'm a writer because I love reading books. When I write, it's like reading at a whole deeper level. I get to see the goings-on beneath the words and learn more about the secrets of the characters. More often than not I forget I'm actually writing and proceed instead in wonder, because the only way I can read the story is to reveal its words on the blank page by typing.

One of the first pieces of advice I got as a novice writer (other than that it was an impossible dream which would see me starving in an attic) was that I should write what I know. Usually, this advice came from non-writers; I didn't actually know any real writers until I began meeting them on the internet. But I appreciated even as a teenager with an arthritic typewriter that "write what you know" is unhelpful, especially for those of us who tend towards the fantasy genre, but infact for every writer - mainly because it's misunderstood. Write from your own emotional experiences; write about how you see the world - absolutely, this you must do. But when it comes to the action? Well, obviously we can not know all that we want to write about.

The piece of advice I give myself most often these days (infact, just this afternoon, which is why I'm writing a post about it) is to write what I myself love to read. And I really only know what that will be when I start putting pen to paper and see if delight awakens or not. Sometimes the most amazing ideas fizzle when I try to discover their story. Other times, half a phrase, or the suggestion of an image, kindles an unexpected story that keeps me breathless, typing as I chase the next sentence, the next scene, wondering what will happen, full of hope for the characters and their resolution ... this to me is the joy that is called writing.


9 comments:

  1. I wake up in the morning and look for your posts. It's so nice to drink my tea and read them :) Oh yes, I think it's great advise, to write what we love. I think our love can even shine through our words, and reach others.

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  2. Write what you love to read; write what you love to imagine. Write from the heart - all good advice!

    Lovely shots too.

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  3. All I can say, (vehemently, passionately, whole-heartedly) is yesss! yesss! Absolutely yesss! And this has to be one of the best posts about writing/writing advice I've come across. Truly. x

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  4. These are wise words about writing Sarah. I have yet to write anything that I would enjoy reading.

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  5. And I believe you are a writer, because it is your Art. The Art, which you have been given. To give to the world.

    Gentle hugs,
    Tessa

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  6. Yes, I do believe I agree. I draw and paint what I want to see, because I don't see it elsewhere. I imagine it is the same with words.

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  7. Thank you everyone for these lovely comments, I appreciated them all so much :-)

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  8. i love this and so wish i could just write….just open up a journal and write and write and write…..instead, i think about writing all the time and just don't grab a pen and paper often enough….

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