Thursday, April 14, 2011

Sinking Into The Murky Blog

Blog, blog, blog…Okay, so sue me, I’m not all that sure about blogs. Who knows whose going to read them? What if your blog attracts a cult of crazed mass-murderers? Or suicide prone individuals who need just that one word to push them over the edge? It’s dangerous, in my opinion. That said, I’ll do my best… and with determination not to encourage murder or personal mutilation.

It’s not easy being a writer. People seem to think if you get paid to write you’re the luckiest person alive. But it’s not easy. Of course we have our days when it just flows – when the words just tumble out one on top of the other and it becomes like a stream then a river and you simply can’t stop. But those days are most often surrounded by days when the words just won’t come and we have to pry them one by one from the dark, tight recesses of our creative minds. And then they don’t often fit properly. A hodge-podge of words that just don’t work together the way we want them to. “But,” we say, “never mind. Tomorrow might be better.” It rarely is.

Then of course we have editors waiting and tapping their feet. Will we have the story finished in time? Will it be any good? So on top of our own pressure to perform, we have the added responsibility of a deadline. After all, it’s not just our story anymore, it’s meant to bring income to a great many people. No dilly-dallying! Evolving creativity can’t hold a candle to the push and shove of the giant publishing machine.

But, okay, let’s face it, making money from our thoughts is one of the best ego-trips around. IF you make money, that is. Gone are the days when publishing a novel will put you on Easy Street. Publishing a novel every six months might make life a little more comfortable, but it’s not a ticket to the limo and prime seats at the opera.

This is not meant to put anyone off writing. On the contrary, if anything it’s meant to encourage writers to follow their hearts. Don’t get caught up in the glamour or glitz you may think goes along with writing. Stick to your personal voice and style. Keep learning. Like what you write. When those days come along where the words simply don’t want to come, keep writing anyway and know it’s natural. And if your work is accepted by a publisher, enjoy it - but don’t lose track of the real reason you started writing in the first place. Most of you will realize in the end that you write because you love it. It’s part of you. And without it, you simply wouldn’t be the same.

And if you’re a mass murderer, or suicide prone, please take up knitting instead of reading blogs. G’day.


Rosanne Dingli said...

Writing is dangerous - much more hazardous than we think (I must have germs in my hastily cleaned kitchen, I'm sure.) And no - I do not encourage anyone to get on this insane mill, least of all my own children who - thankfully - realize I live a crazy life full of rewrites, hand-wringing, anxiety over sales and w-a-i-t-i-n-g!
They will go into normal industries where people do not exclaim, 'Ah, you're a database administrator - you must make heaps of money.'

Anonymous said...

I agree with Rosanne's comment. It's a crazy industry, but oh, it's wonderful to tell stories!

Anyway, what's 'normal'? I worked as a public servant and that place was even crazier.

Dale Harcombe said...

Yes, we may often wonder why we do it. But the answer is we can't help ourselves. We have to.