I don’t write to be famous, I don’t write to be known, I write because I am and I want to be read. How sad to fill a room with paintings no one sees or play music no one hears. Writing is talking without sound, singing without score and dancing without movement and yet, it is all of them. It is a solitary art conjured from thought and expressed by the need to communicate.

HEAD SLAPS, SPEED BUMPS and LIGHTBULBS, one woman's WTF, oops and ah-ha moments of life.

They were published once, and as every writer knows, once is not enough.

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

I want Morgan Freeman to narrate my life

Who do you want to narrate your life?

I’m doing a rewrite, a little editing here, a little editing there, and actually enjoying the read because it’s been awhile since I’ve autopsied, resuscitated and resurrected my first attempt at fiction. Because I am a short-form essayist I was once told there is no way I can write fiction. So taking up the sort-of-dare, I wrote this 82,541 word novel in six weeks, it has taken me seven and a half years to finish it.  

After the book was done, the first time, I naively queried, and instantly was convinced the naysayer was correct. As experts often espouse, first novels are autobiographical in that first-timers draw from their own experience because it is all they know. Yes, I did that but the book is not about me. The main character’s early life is peppered with instances which are backboned, but not fleshed out, by my past; her past is unique, it’s not mine. But still, I put it away because shelving your first seems to be the opinion of many in the know, who am I to say the experts are wrong?

So here I am almost eight years later, visiting the story I loved then and love even more now. Holding it in abeyance has been a good thing I think, because after over a year of structured writing, meeting deadlines and dealing with editors I’ve learned a few things. Following agent and writer blogs has helped too. Readers of my novel have helped as well but not so much as critics, as one would imagine, but as unexpected bolsters.

Yesterday I was cooking along, enjoying the read, inserting a little, deleting less and then all of a sudden, (insert sound of screeching brakes locking up here), I ran into some eight year old greenhorn writing that smacked so loudly of prose amateurishly written that I wanted to slam my laptop shut and take up professional lawn darts.  But I did not.

I decided to Shawshank my way through the second half of the book, the made-up part, the part which draws little from my past. If Andy DuFresne can crawl through shit so can I.  And then I realized, it was a speed-bump after all, a glitch written by a tired mind and hurting hands. I’m through it and on my way again and loving it.

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