Wednesday, June 27, 2007

An Old Friend

I was at the local Bendigo Showgrounds market the other week and was browsing the book stands (I couldn't help myself) and came across an ancient copy of The Shining - a pretty rare movie tie-in edition - so I snatched it up for the princely sum of $3. You're probably asking why I did this when I could by it brand new for $20. Well, here's my answer.

All I wanted was an old copy I could read without worrying about damaging it. I missed the book - I actually sold one of my copies years ago (for shame) but that's another story. The Shining happens to be my most favourite book of all time. During my life I've read it three times before delving into it's pages again right now. I don't think I could ever get sick of it. You fall in love with the characters so much so that when you read the book again it's like visiting old friends.

I've never felt this way about any other book (although I do have soft spots for Christine, Needful Things and Pet Semetary). The story is so compelling that I will probably read it again several more times throughout my life.

This was just something personal that I wanted to share with you.

Until next time...

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

My Growth as a Writer

Recently, I've been reflecting on ways in which to improve my writing. A story I wrote at the beginning of the year was one I was quite happy with - that is, until I received six straight rejections. Then I started thinking, what am I doing wrong?

I've figured it out. It was so blatantly obvious and yet, I was oblivious to it. The conclusion I've come to is that...wait for it - I rush my stories. Upon analyzing and thinking about how I go about my work, I've discovered that I have become too concerned about having my stories reach print rather than give the story its best chance by taking my time with them. I've been too caught up by quantity - not quality, wanting to become too big too soon.

So right here, right now I'm going to make a declaration. With every story I write from here on in, I'm going to bang out a first draft and let it sit for a little while instead of launching straight into the second draft. I have found that my aproach to my work of late has been very narrow minded. I haven't let the stories rest and haven't asked myself quesions such as, Is the story original enough? Have I used word economy to its best advantage? Does the story flow smoothly and is it polished to a professional enough standard?

No, I haven't been asking myself these questions and my work has suffered greatly from it. So, in order to succeed and have more stories published, I will strive to give considerable thought as to a story's appeal and work and work and work it until I'm satisfied that I have written them as best as I posibly can.