1:19 PM

So you wrote a novel, think that makes you special?

Actually, I think it does. While there is a difference between whether or not people think it's good is a debate for another time. Writing a novel is time consuming, frustrating, complicated and ultimately rewarding.

I don't think it's something just anyone can do and it irks me to no ends when I tell people I write and they brush it off saying 'That's no big deal'.  No big deal? NO BIG DEAL!? Do you know how many hours of my life go into my manuscripts? How many tears I shed over killing off characters and out of frustration when things aren't flowing? Do you know how many times I've edited and re-written the entire thing? Do you know how attached I've become to my characters and that I dream about plot lines and conversations? Do you realize how many times I've had to blow off plans or put aside having a real life because of the compulsion to finish writing?  I'm sure you don't have the foggiest idea.  You know what else? My stories are GOOD. They're engaging and entertaining. Things make sense and questions that are brought up are answered. There's foreshadowing and flashbacks and dammit it's a complicated process!

The people who think it's cake to write a novel may very well go ahead and try themselves, but more often than not, it's a half assed attempt. Rather quickly, they will make start to excuses as to why they're not writing and why it's not finished: Their "real" job got in the way, they were too busy with a social life, they don't need to prove anything to you!,etc. 

I find that a lot of the people who think writing is no big deal are the same people who don't read much.  They might see a movie adaptation and think the book is identical. Sorry folks, we readers know how untrue that often is.  The movies are nice and I enjoy seeing my favorite stuff adapted, but they rarely hit the mark of being as good as the books. In fact, the only two adaptations that come to mind as being as good or maybe even slightly better than their written counterparts: To Kill a Mockingbird and The Princess Bride.

A good rule of thumb to live by: don't judge the work of others unless you've been in their shoes. That makes sense, right? I'm combining sayings here or whatever, but you understand what I mean. Unless you've made an attempt, done the job or have been in that same situation, don't blow off someone's hard work and accomplishments. Really it just makes you out to look jealous and while I love the color green, it's not a very appealing skin tone...unless of course you're a frog, or lizard, or maybe an alien.


Patricia Lynne said...

Preach it girlfriend!

It can be annoying when you're talking about writing, excited and proud of how much you've done and your friends shrug it off. With my friends it's gotten to the point where I don't bother. I have my writer buddies to gush about writing with (and my husband because he married me and therefore has to listen to whatever I say ^^)

MBee said...

heh I'm at the point where I won't bring it up unless they do first. Sometimes they ask, but otherwise I tend to not talk about it as they don't seem to really get it. Thank god for the internet as a place to gush! :D

Austin James said...

I agree! Any novel written is an accomplishment worth being proud of...

and movies... the more I read, the less I enjoy movies... it's just not the same experience.

Jane Cranmer said...

I know what you mean. Writing my first book was going on for so long it was becoming embarassing, especially when I decided to cut out the middle man and set up a publishing company too and the long hours of researching that involved (and still does). You get to the point where you don't REALLY want to talk about the book except to your writer friends who are in the same boat (and all trying to bail out the water with you lol).
It's amazing how when the book comes out you are suddenly everyones new best friend... I've never been as popular in my life as I am currently. Of course it turns out they had faith in me all along... except for my husband, who's truthful enough to admit he's waiting for the royalties to come in.
WHAT... he thinks I'll get paid for this too!

MBee said...

Hah you totally ought to use that money to do something nice for yourself before he gets a cut! A nice relaxing spa day could work! :D

and congratulations on getting yourself published!