Things, they are a happening

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I’m currently in Wellington for six days, so I might be a little light on the posting. Also, as I have a reduced wardrobe, minimal time and without my DSLR, I won’t be posting Aussie Curves this week (we will see how next week goes), but I look forward to seeing what the other girls come up with for Festival.

One exciting thing you can read in my absence is my latest short story over on The Short Stories Club blog.

I think I mentioned this – I’m trying to write a short story once a month to be published here. Didn’t manage one last month (ugh, deadlines), but it will be a monthly occurrence to boost my fictional writing instead of news/features and blogging. And each month is themed.

Just, ALL THE WRITING.

September was The Servant and I tried to do a modern take on it with an intern.

The Intern

She sat writing, practically shaking with anger as she remembered the day’s events…

Dear Diary,

I fucking hate that bitch. I don’t know how much of her privileged demands I can take. She doesn’t even realise how commanding she is, she just expects everything.

Of course it is my job to do some of the things she requests,  but honestly, others are downright insane. They are not part of my job description. She doesn’t even pay me, oh is the life of an intern…

To continue reading, click here…

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Writers vs Listeners

 

There are two types of people in this world – listeners and writers – according to this article on Thought Catalog.

I am the latter.

This quote is rather telling:

Writers don’t know anguish — they are anguish. They are the voice of self-destructiveness. They are their only saviors. Writers smear upon blank canvases with paint made of their own suffering. They understand that a piece is never complete without the price — a toll that is rarely forgotten.

To read, or not to read, that is the question.

A few weeks ago a friend put me onto some Stephen King quotes about writing.

I found them very interesting, but one of them gave me an idea.

I’m a slow reader, but I usually get through seventy or eighty books a year, most fiction. I don’t read in order to study the craft; I read because I like to read.

This got me thinking – how many books do I read in a year? Definitely not 70 or 80. I’m actually quite slack on reading. Or at least have been.

However, since I got my kindle, and have a half hour train ride morning and night, I have been reading so much more lately. I’ve even begun reading in the half hour before I go to sleep again.

I really do like to read, I’ve always been quite an avid reader. And in order to be a good writer, you should read, because you learn a lot from it, so says Stephen King* again.

If you want to be a writer, you must do two things above all others: read a lot and write a lot. There’s no way around these two things that I’m aware of, no shortcut.

So my idea is to a) keep track of the books I am reading and b) aim to read about 70 or 80 books this year.

Now, I know I probably won’t get there simply because I do have a 9 to 5 job, unlike Stephen King, but you have to start somewhere.

I’m going to set up a “Book Index” like my recipes index to keep track of the books I’ve read and the ones I want to read this year. I’ll also try to incorporate my Goodreads account somehow, as I have it, yet barely use it.

And maybe, just maybe, if I read more, I might be inspired to write more.

*Note to self: read more Stephen King.

Questions of Morality

Writers-Festival

Last weekend I attended one seminar as part of Sydney Writer’s Festival. I really wanted to go to a few more, but there were so many people there – you needed to queue for an hour beforehand to get into them. Maybe next year I will go to a few of the paid ones to make sure I get a seat – most of the ones I wanted to go to were free with no bookings. My bad.

The one seminar I did manage to attend was Questions of Morality.

I found the panel really interesting and some of the things they said have made me want to get over some of the qualms I have about writing fiction.

A few of the things I picked up from the seminar include:

  • choose to be good, or a good writer
  • all good literature is immoral in a way
  • be true to your own story
  • people like stories of transgression – we like the dark and the deep. That type of literature is part of the experience
  • proceed until apprehended
  • if all your family were dead, it would be easier to write
  • a writer in the family is hell for all families
  • if you really want to get something off your chest, you write a novel.

Some books that I aim to read because of what came up in this seminar are Mein Kamph (Karl Ove Knausgaard recommended this for every writer), American Psycho and some Ayn Rand. I’m also keen to read some of Krissy Kneen’s work, some of the examples she provided about her own work piqued my interest in a ‘how do you write that’ and ‘how does that even work’ kind of way. Especially something about a pony beastiallity scene. That just makes you go WFT?!

Maybe if I follow some of these ‘tips’, I might overcome some of my apprehension of, not only writing, but also letting people read my fictional writing. Only good things could happen, right?