The Writer’s Wheel 5/31/2020: Lessons in Life
Never think you have nothing to say. You do. You’ve walked a different road, lived a different life than all other humans. Therefore, you have your story to tell. And I have mine.
Make a commitment. Challenge fate. Learn all that you can to strive forward down the path you have chosen. Or perhaps has been chosen for you. You can break on the pathway wherever you wish. Will you disappoint some? Yes. But if you can forge ahead, you may win them back. Writing is a solitary profession. It can both make and break you.
If you care about your family, perhaps you shouldn’t begin without their blessing. There are many long, lonely nights at the keyboard. Researching. Outlining. And going the distance on a story. You make many sacrifices. A normal home life. Nights out. Events. On and on. All in the name of a deadline that may bring you some money in.
To Keep the Course.
You will grow more confident with practice. With repeated learning of your craft. Each word will make you stronger, each story, bring you through the darkness. For me, writing keeps me motivated. It gives me something to works toward. Something to share with the world. My family wishes I spent more time with them, yes. Often, I break away to do so. After all, life is short. You must spend it doing something you love. And share it with your loved ones if you can.
If they’re not interested in your work, find others that are. Don’t lose your family by all means. Just give them space. You do your thing and they’ll do theirs. Sometimes that’s the best way of things. If they have hobbies of their own so much the better. Let them pursue their dreams as you conquer yours. It takes a lot to be dedicated, involved with your characters and your home life. You can do it if you set your mind to both.
Choosing the Way.
Some writers begin with short stories and poems. The aim is to keep busy and to practice your craft in smaller segments so that the whole can grow later to novels. Both short stories and poems are quicker, easier to learn your craft doing. You have limited space to work with so you must learn to bring your arc together faster. A beginning, middle, and end will become a normal draw for your work. Doing this over and over will develop skill.
Rambling along on a story, on the other hand, does not. That’s not keeping the words tight, the story on point. Instead, you’re just stumbling into different scenarios as you move along and that doesn’t keep the reader interested. He doesn’t care that there’s a mud puddle in the midst of the kingdom where carts keep getting stuck unless you give us characters and a reason for that puddle to matter. Is it a portal to another land? Will getting stuck ruin a servant’s chance for freedom? Does the local villain reveal himself?
All stories come to an end. Learning how to do it and satisfy your reader can be a delicate tool in your belt. Do you end with the climax or an epilogue? Is an epilogue needed? Is everything said that needs said during the battle? Do the characters defeat/reconcile with one another? Does a marriage take place?
If there is to be a sequel, this is where you add in a hint of what’s to come in the next challenge. Don’t leave things on a cliffhanger as far as the major problem of this book. End it. Then pick up a new danger. A neighboring pirate wants your gold. Your old master has delivered you to a new one. Will your trials be over? Or just beginning? Don’t inflate the story simply to have sequels but do so if your character’s suffering is not yet finished. If there’s a reason for him/her to go further, to beat the gods, continue.