Thursday, June 16, 2016

Easy Reading is Damn Hard Writing

Easy reading is damn hard writing.

How many times have you read a book and thought, "Wow. This author really knows how to write a story! I wish I could write like this."

From that writer's viewpoint, they are more than likely arguing with themselves about how the story should go. You know they are critiquing their work and proclaiming that they are the worst writer of all time. They, too, are staring at the page waiting for the words to magically appear fully formed and written in the most beautiful prose possible. It's not uncommon. Elizabeth Gilbert said that she has had to sweat and labour and toil with her writing process, only to catch glimpses of the creative muse.

I struggle with this process, too. There are times when I can come up with beautiful sentences in my head, but when I put them onto the computer or on paper, it comes out weird and awkward.

Writing is a long process and I don't think many people can appreciate the time spent in creating that piece of work. Anything creative takes time. And, there is always the big possibility that people will hate it. On the other hand, people might love it. It's always subject to interpretation by the person experiencing the creative work, whether it is a book, a song, or art.

I recently painted my very own version of The Kiss by Klimt. This is my own expression, and it's one that I am happy with. I'm so happy with it that I will probably to it again.

Pablo Picasso said, "Inspiration exists, but it has to find you working." You can't be sitting on your ass, watching TV, waiting for inspiration to strike. You have to get at it, even if you don't really want to. I liken it to going to kickboxing. There are a million and one ways I can talk myself out of not going to kickboxing. But, I love it when I'm doing it and I love it when I'm done.

Jack London said, "You can't wait for inspiration. You have to go after it with a club." Whatever way is going to get you there, that's the way you take. If it means writing out a grocery list to start with, then do it. Yes, writing can be hard, but, it can only be as hard as you make it.

I recently published my book Just Between You and Me. It was something I started back in 2003 and it was time to get this book (and a few others I had written) out to the public. Formatting and proofing this thing was a slow process with no guarantee that I would be compensated for my efforts.  

Does it matter? Somewhat. The point is, I just want to create and to share my work with the world. If they like it, awesome. If not? Nothing I can do about it. I just want to do what I love to do. Why? Because I've worked hard for it and it makes me happy. Isn't that what it's all about?

No comments: