The Gift.

January 11, 2007

I’ve always sort of fancied that I have “The Gift” for writing.

Maybe not.

I realized when looking at a few of my recent stories that I rely sometimes too much on cliche, that sometimes the piece doesn’t hang together, that I run off half-cocked on a story that needs a lot of tightening. I don’t plot out my writing before I start, so sometimes I get to the middle, or worse, the end and think, “now what?”

I’ve scoffed at those who buy books on how to write or who have signed up for lectures on how to sell a book. Hey, you either have it or you don’t, right? You can either do the work naturally, or you shouldn’t be doing it at all. But I’m starting to wonder. Can reading about writing actually make you a better writer? Can you learn to be good?

We shall see. Yesterday I ordered a book, called Plot & Structure, that focuses on, duh…plot and structure. It was a hard pill to swallow.

See what I mean? A hard pill to swallow! Forgive the cliche.

3 Responses to “The Gift.”

  1. Kaitlyn said

    Re: the cursed idea that if you’ve “got it” that’s all you’ll need: Yes, quite! I coasted for a long time on the fact that I had talent, expecting my unorganized and poorly thought out writing to yield bountiful returns of praise and publication. Only in recent years have I realized that the talent is just the beginning. You’ve got to work it like h*ll, tame it and shape it with practice, into a craft. Sadly, the years I spent listening closely for applause were the ones when I had time to burn. Now that I’ve gotten smart, I’ve also gotten a life, which takes most of my time. Ouch. Oh well. I look forward to knowing if the book is helpful–I’ve thought about getting a novel writing book myself lately, as I cruise around the perimeter of this project, looking for doors marked “entrance”.

  2. Grace said

    November of 2005 I was gifted with a lovely tool – It’s called “The Observation Deck – A Took Kit for Writers” by Naomi Epel. 🙂 It’s very cool.

  3. Kaitlyn…yes, you are right…tame it. That’s sort of my issue, it’s all over the place. And, “life” in the form of marriage, kids, work, etc…makes being a writer all that more difficult, but maybe that more rewarding in the end. Hmm.

    Grace–thanks for the tip. I’ll check it out. You definitely seem like someone who has a natural talent, so it’s heartening to see that you’ve checked out using some kind of tool…thanks for the info!
    -mj

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