I spent all of Friday in bed. I felt tired and had a pretty bad headache. Before people worry about Covid-19 it had nothing to do with that, rather it was going back on the keto diet. It is what they call the keto flu. I’m rather accustomed to getting it, so I knew to expect it.
While laying there in the bed trying to keep my head from exploding, I was thinking. Mind you, I wasn’t quite in my right mind as I kept falling in and out of sleep. Anyway, my inner voice was like, you know what is good about being in solitary confinement back here. I can write anything I want to write and it doesn’t matter.
Yeah, that is how bad I was. I seriously sat there for several moments like, yeah I could. I could take the time to read as well. All of that excited me a lot. It took more time then I’d like to admit to realize that I have that option rather I’m on quarantine or not. Literally, my writing career is my own an my time is mine to decide what to do with it.
I hate to admit it, that I did face palm myself, regrettably so. The pain drug a whimper from my throat. Once I could see something other than white light and feel my pulse in my eyeballs, I realized how much I’m my own worst enemy.
I’ve spent years upon years studying the craft of writing. I have read countless articles and books on the subject. I’ve watched YouTube videos and Masterclass ones to learn how to write.
I found a whole lot of people saying that plotting is the only way to go, and others that say let the first draft be pantsed. I’d even found a dozen or so ways to plot, if not more. I tried them all.
I have plotted using snowflake method, 7 Magnificent Plot Points, nesting plots together…anyway, you can think of, I probably have tried. All these have done is manage to make it harder and harder for me to sit down to write. Not because they don’t work. Oh no, they certainly have their bonuses, but they all made me feel strapped down and like I didn’t know what I was doing at all.
There are so many articles and blogs that tell you to stick to one genre and if you write in multiple genres then you will have troubles with readers or need to use pen names. It is endless the amount of information out there and the way people say is the ‘right way’ to do things. There certainly are plenty of things to prove or disprove whatever side of the fence you are sitting on.
I’m not here to tell you what is the right way. I will say that so far, none of these have been MY way of working. In fact, they’ve left me not wanting to sit down and do anything. I didn’t trust my character creation, the stories in my head or anything. If I wasn’t writing like all these famous authors then surely I wasn’t doing it correctly.
These things tore at me, they still do to a point. Let me break this down for you, there is no RIGHT WAY. There is only your way and the methods that work for you. There is no MAGIC PATH to make it all easier either. Nope, the only way to get stories finished is to sit down and put in the time.
The more you put in the time and write, the better your writing will become. You will be able to not only see improvements in your writing, but when you go back to edit, that will improve as well.
So, it doesn’t matter what you’ve read or heard. If people say to stick to one genre or have many. Plotting or pantsing isn’t even the answer. The one path that works is the one you create for yourself. Don’t follow anyone else. Make your own way. You want to write in multiple genres, then do that. Don’t listen to anyone else about what is write for you.
Trust me, as time goes on you will find genres you do really well and enjoy. They will be the ones you find yourself writing in more than any, but as we grow and change as people, our tastes in writing can develop as well. Just like your taste buds and the type of books you love to read.
So, sit down, experiment with whatever genres you think you will enjoy. Write short stories or novels or whatever your heart wants. Just don’t let everyone else tell you what is right and what is wrong. There is not clear definition there. Only what is right for you and what is wrong.
Until then have fun. Take care of yourselves during these trying times, Readers. Try to find light in all the darkness.