I don’t usually participate in blog tags and awards, but the lovely Jen tagged me in a post that I couldn’t resist.
Writing is NOT like a box of chocolates, so what is it REALLY like?
This statement isn’t true with a lot of people. There are people who dive into a writing project with no idea what they’re going to get out of it. Some projects are successes, while others are miserable failures.
For myself, it depends on the project. I’ve written nearly 30 short stories this year using writing challenges from Brian Kiteley’s The 3 A.M. Epiphany. Although I had an outline of how to write the story, I didn’t think the plot through before my hands engaged the keyboard. With most of the stories, I was surprised to see where I ended up in the plots and VERY pleased at what I got out of writing them.
In retrospect, I spent 4 months creating a detailed outline of BEHOLDERS before I began writing the actual manuscript for the first book, INSIGHT. A ton of details need to be streamlined for a high fantasy novel (magic, races, language, history, theology, etc.), so I think flying by the seat of your pants for such a project is a horrible idea. I would have painted myself into a corner on many occasions had I not known what/where I wanted to “get.”
That brings up an interesting point. What and where are two very different terms that interact constantly in writing. While “where you get” might include plot or success as an author, “what you get” is a lot more personal.
So what do I get out of writing?
Boy, what a question. I don’t know where to start or end, so I’ll keep it short. A sense of fulfillment, the chance to verbalize my imagination, the opportunity to explore new emotions and circumstances. Through the past 3 years of intensive writing, my identity has changed dramatically. I am a better and smarter person because of it.
I pass this post onto 3 of my writing buddies. Check out their websites. They're fantastic!