On writing

kids book

I have loved writing for as long as I can remember. One of my earliest memories, perhaps also of jealousy, was when a girl in my prep class brought in a ‘book’ she’d written. It was about her dog, flimsy paper stapled together complete with 5 year old drawings. It was impressive for a 5 year old, or at least I thought so. I remember the teacher raving about it. I remember being jealous. And I remember wanting to have my own book. I remember thinking I could do that.

It’s not why I took up writing as a hobby, it’s just the first time I remember thinking I could. My preference is fiction. In fact, I hate non-fiction and would do just about anything to make something up instead of doing research. One year for a high school argumentative essay, I took it to the next level. I’m sure I was meant to pick a controversial topic and write something about whether there should be a death penalty, or if video games promote violence. So what did I write about? Why we should wear safety goggles, all the time. It outlined a good many arguments, but required absolutely no research. Which was not the point of the essay, but my teacher took it in her stride – said it was creative and well-written and gave me a good mark.

Later in life I decided I was going to write a book. With so many ideas scrambling around in my head it seemed like the thing to do. Of course I had no idea how hard it would be. It starts out fun, with that scene or character that’s been plaguing your mind churning into real life. But a novel is long. It’s detailed. So as it develops you suddenly realise there are huge plot holes, or things that make no sense in real life. You come to the sudden realisation how many times you use variants of ‘sudden’ and ‘realise’.

I think I now have three complete manuscripts. Hubby keeps asking me when I’m going to sell the movie rights so he can stop working. But he’s been misled – I wanted to write a novel… I never said anything about publishing! In any case, they’re pretty awful. Well… perhaps there are spots of brilliance but I think for the most part they’re clichéd, boring and feature a cast of uninteresting characters that probably all reflect myself in some way. I don’t think they are the worst things I’ve ever read, but they are far from the best. I’m not a Hemmingway. I won’t be the next JK Rowling. In fact I’m not sure I want to be.

In any case, I haven’t written a word apart from this blog since I went on maternity leave. I’m taking a break. That’s ok. I’ll get back to it. Or I won’t. I have other things to deal with now. And when I come up for a breath from this whole baby thing, I’ll see how I feel then.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s