A Moment Of Clarity (A Writer’s Rant Post)
How often do we dispense advice we refuse to follow ourselves?
I’ve been writing and publishing for twenty years. I have very little to show for it. A smattering of well-received fanfictions, and a few published works I didn’t have the courage to leave on the market.
The fact is, I’m not a big fiction reader. I used to be, but the love is buried under several tons of trauma, with the other things I kept safe. I prefer narrative video games like Mass Effect, Far Cry 5 and Skyrim for storytelling. I consume graphic novels in the DC and Marvel universes. And I am a voracious reader of nonfiction.
And the truth is, I wanted to make video games. I wanted to draw comics. I still do. But I have no aptitude for coding and I can’t draw a stick figure with a ruler. Words come naturally to me. We go with the gifts we are given.
My age-old question is; if I’m not a good reader, how can I possibly be a good writer?
The answer, after two decades of failure, is; I don’t know.
Here’s what I do know.
Brevity comes naturally to me. Lengthy prose does not. I can churn out several flash stories in a week, especially in a universe I’m familiar with. Books do not come naturally to me, but I’m willing to put in the time to learn get better.
People have responded well to my stories. Every single story I ever put on Wattpad was awarded. The stories I submitted to FanStory all garnered four and five stars. So did the few things I published on Amazon. Kobo gave me fifteen minutes of fame. People do like my writing. It’s faith in myself I’m trying to build.
Stories make the world go around. People work with exceptional dedication to ensure how certain stories are told. History is a litany of bloodshed lost by people trying to control the narrative of what came before us. Stories are important. Stories are the most valuable intangible asset the world has. I would very much love my stories to become part of the cultural narrative. But first, I have to tell them.
That may never happen. There’s a really good chance I never sell another piece of fiction. There’s a chance that maybe only a handful of people, if that, read my stories, much less enjoy them. I’m too ambitious and arrogant to settle, but I’m trying to make myself okay with that.
I just want to tell good stories. That’s all.
I hope you took something from this. If not, thanks for reading my rant.