by Ron Vitale
I'd like to welcome guest blogger Morgan Silver to the site. She's recently finished her first novel, The Chess Club, about a chess club that solves crimes, for which she's currently seeking an agent.
Writers are a special kind of breed. They observe the world and its inhabitants, they notice things normal people don’t and they explore worlds that normal people wouldn’t even think of. They don’t miss anything, in fact, they see more than there is to see. Normal people will never understand them and the writer does not mind. The writer pities the normal person for not seeing the array of colours they get to see, which are far more than the colours of the rainbow.
If someone asks me why I became a writer, there is only one simple answer: Why haven’t you? Writing is not a choice, it’s a lifestyle. If there is any choosing involved then it is writing that chooses you. It chooses you and then grabs you, climbs into your mind and soul until you eat, breathe and sleep writing. It’s like love, sometimes reciprocated and sometimes not, driving you mad occasionally. But you wouldn’t want it any other way because the feeling is amazing nonetheless.
True writers are born that way. They aren’t people who decide to write on a whim or because they think it’s cool, it’s something they HAVE to do. They can’t go long without creating stories, analysing people and picking up a pen.
They are usually perfectionists and philosophers, thinking about big questions. Not just regarding life, but also their writing. They take care with their writing and with their image as a writer. And that is how it should be; the reader deserves the best from the writer.
Personally I am at that pensive stage right now. As a bit of a perfectionist I like to do my best with anything I care about. So I’m thinking about what kind of writer I want to be. What brand is my name? I want people to read my book and think: that is typically her. You only get one shot to make a good first impression. But the benefit is that if nobody notices you, you can still work hard to redeem yourself with the next book.
The only way you can find yourself as a writer, is by writing. Reading is also a big part of that, of course, and so is communicating with other writers. You can learn things from them, teach them, vent, rant, laugh, smile and perhaps even cry (not necessarily in a bad way). For instance, one of the things I’ve learned is that a story comes to me better when I don’t plot that much. One time I completely managed to plot things out in certain scenes/events, but halfway through the story got turned around. And now that I’m working on another mystery, I felt like I should plot this one out like a crazy banana, but it really isn’t working. I swear, I’ve tried. *shakes laptop* I’ve tried so hard! But for some reason, it works better for me when I know some things, but not too much. It’s like I’m just the person that types, while the story itself finds a way in my mind and dictates what I’m supposed to type next. It’s that easy and that hard.
From what I learned, also with my MA, is that plotting is a good thing, necessary even. And that is why I felt like I failed when I couldn’t plot my entire novel, but now I’m beginning to see that it’s not such a bad thing. It’s just not my style. Everybody has their own way, we can always learn, we can always try new ways, but sometimes we just have to trust that our way is the right way. At least, for ourselves.
Only time will tell, but as long as you have talent, guts and perseverance…how can it go wrong? This world can be a nasty place so let’s create our own safe and magical place through our stories.
Name: Morgan Silver
Location: Behind you! No, kidding, just a small country called The Netherlands.
Education: BA English Language and Culture and MA Creative Writing (did MA in England).
Writing: Finished my first novel, The Chess Club, about a chess club that solves crimes, for which I’m currently seeking an agent and am now working on a cozy mystery.