Why write?

I have been writing since I was eight and I still have some of my writing from back then…it’s pretty funny, and not in a ‘ha,ha’ kind of way! But the point is…that I WAS writing – I mean, that’s what writers DO after all.

Baby Shel

Ok, not when I was of writing age, but me nonetheless!

I try to remember why I wrote then – I think I really liked telling stories, I liked the response I got from people reading them or hearing them. Though I was a little shy, I enjoyed being the centre of attention, so writing was perfect – I put in the creative energy, they did all the reading, I got all the praise! I was also curious about the world and in my writing I could imagine all kinds of things that I had never seen of experienced myself. Then there were times that I wrote about things because I didn’t understand them.

I remember a conversation with my parents about parents who abuse their children – it must have been on the news or something I guess. Afterwards I was angry and confused that there were parents out there who treated their children horribly and I tried to imagine what that would be like for a child. I poured all that confusion into a very assertive poem and felt better for it afterwards.

Writing for me then, began as expression, therapy, a friend, an escape, a way of connecting others with my deeper most thoughts and feelings about the world.

So now I want to write a novel! Why do I want to write a novel in the first place?

  • I have always wanted to and I’d like to see if I can.
  • I have a story to tell that will take more words than a short story.
  • I want to make sense of myself and the world and hopefully help others to do the same in the process.

I want to write this novel because:

  • I am curious about a particular historical figure and era, and want to work out what happens to my character within this context.
  • I have a comment to make about the discrimination.
  • I want to explore adolescent feelings of isolation and fragmentation, of difference and the desire to belong.

Today I’m also reviewed my writing from ‘Getting some help’: the second blog I posted. In that post, I did a bit of uncensored writing, but after reviewing first pages of various novels, I wanted to go back and rewrite my first line “The day after my eighth birthday, my grandmother told me that I was to be given a great opportunity.” in a way that was more intriguing. Here are my two attempts, and I think I prefer the second one. What do you think?

  • The day after my eighth birthday, my grandmother told me that my real grandfather was a witch hunter from Šumperk.
  • The day after my eighth birthday, my grandmother told me I had to leave.

Lastly, I have had an essay published this week Critique of young Adult Historical Fiction. It is available online at ‘The Copperfield Review, Volume 12 Number 1 Winter 2013′.

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