And goes and goes and goes …
Some days I’m pretty sure the only things I can count on in this world are:
1. my cat will camp out on top of my computer
2. my cat will steal bacon off my breakfast plate while I’m pouring juice
3. teenagers are insane
4. logic does not prevail
5. nor does good triumph over evil
6. I will never dance naked in front of strangers (or family … you can breathe easy now)
7. sanity is fleeting
8. a good story is hard to find and even harder to write well
9. and a good writing mentor is even harder to find than that
Writing is such a fickle thing. Writers like to talk about their muse, as if it’s a friend they invite for tea or a weekend at the beach. And yet, writing is 98% perspiration and only 2% inspiration, so the muse is simply another myth created to maintain the mystic of the writer persona … I guess.
I don’t think I have a persona.
That’s okay for a writer. After all we hide behind our stories. We live life through our characters. We act out all those devilishly clever ideas we could never find the strength to do in real life. We don’t need a persona as long as we can create one when it’s needed.
The public has the idea that writers are enormously great at what they do. They write therefore they must be educated and intelligent. Right?
But it seems to me that, like a muse, is only a tiny part of writing. And for some people, it’s not a part at all. I’ve met some enormously talented writers in the last few years with wildly successful novels to their credit. But I’ve also met some enormously bad writers as well with wildly successful novels to their credit.
That’s how it goes.
It doesn’t seem fair and I find myself puzzled over and over when I enter a competition with a beautifully thought out, sweat induced, thoroughly edited piece of writing and, then, something that has nothing to do with the prompt, misspelled words and incomplete sentences wins.
It’s bizarre. It’s like there’s some standard of perfection, that isn’t perfection, that needs to be attained but no one can tell you what that standard is, let alone how to achieve it.
Write from the heart.
Write what matters to you.
Write what you know.
Don’t use omniscient voice.
Only use first person in certain situations.
Always have a plot twist that no one expects.
Every single book on writing, every writing instructor, everyone who’s ever published anything has their own theory on what to do right and what is wrong.
Truth is … there is no right answer in life … or writing. That’s just how it goes. You just have to do your best, work your butt off, and hope, somewhere, at some point in time, you’ll find your own perfection.