Sunday, January 16, 2011

Why Do We Write?

I'm probably going to sound like a broken record right now, but I've been reading Stephen King's "On Writing" and it's been a revelation, seriously. I'm not saying that all of the crap loads of "How to write" books are worth the paper they're printed on, but in this particular instance, I have to say Mr. King is absolutely brilliant. He talks about practically everything I've been worrying over for the past however many years I've been actively pursuing writing the next great American novel.
 It's not that he has written rules and suggestions that I haven't all ready heard/read before, but he brings the "how to's" of writing down to a level that isn't so complicated it makes me want to pull out my hair and run screaming into rush hour traffic. That's not to say he dumbs it down, but his writing style makes it seems like he's having a long conversation with his readers and I respond really well to his methods. Then there's the profound statement he makes. For instance:

"Talent renders the whole idea of rehearsal meaningless; when you find something at which you are talented, you do it (whatever it is) until your fingers bleed or your eyes are ready to fall out of your head. Even when no one is listening (or reading, or watching), every outing is a bravura performance, because you as the creator are happy."

To that I say, three cheers for Mr. King! This is exactly how I feel about writing. It's what I was meant to do. It's what I think about when I first wake up in the morning and sometimes--when my brain isn't taken hostage by random invasions of vampire aliens from mars--what I dream about at night. I'm not saying I will ever be the best right in the world, but I do think the literary world is where I belong. Now…if I can just get a foot through the door I'll be all good.

1 comment:

Stacey Hays said...

You won't have to worry about getting a foot in the door. Finishing our novel is the biggest accomplishment yet. I still don't feel that we give each other enough credit for that alone. And of course Stephen King is BRILLIANT!!! He is like one of the best book writers of ALL time. I can imagine how his suggestions hit so close to home, considering that we are all struggling writers.

One of these days we will find our nitch in the writing world and from there it will be all gravy.