The Writer's Shrine: The Boys are Back

Writing is a passion many people experience after reading Tolkien's works. Come here to discuss and share your experiences with writing.

The Writer's Shrine: The Boys are Back

Postby A_Simple_Poet » Fri Nov 23, 2012 5:11 pm

I'm starting this thread angry.

I'm angry at the prevailing vibe I sense about the craft of fiction writing in the 21st century. I'm angry at the lack of enthusiasm for interactive support dialogue for writers that populate The One Ring Community. And I'm angry at myself for not rising to the occassion of treating the art of fiction writing as akin to religious devotion.

What has happened?

Has video not only killed the radio star but co-opted the literary hack as well? All of the hacks have gone on to write horrid screenplays and glitter vampire fiction. All of the poets are baked on something more than pumpkin pie, though the better ones are with Parm. Where have all the writers GONE?

Come back here. Not to the Cafe which has long outlived its usefulness. The very term Cafe seems to communicate laziness and an ethereal quality of intangible product. Cafes are for poets (and prose procrastinators) and despite my moniker, I am no longer one of those. In lieu of beginning more Blogger white noise and maintaining a social life, I have launched this thread ... a Shrine to those dedicated to the craft. It is my hope to share writing experiences without giving away our work. I will also post prompts, article links, and what's happening in my life. If you're not down with this gritty, street level approach to fiction word crafting then by all means go elsewhere.

OR, if you're slightly more daring, derail my agenda by adding your own. All I ask is that you keep it literary and reasonably serious. Light hearted nonsense to pad your post count on the way to your ring can be achieved elsewhere.

Lastly, this thread is dedicated to Vison ... a pragmatic voice, a singular wit, and one heck of a writer. She will be missed but I hope to replicate the zeal she felt for life here in terms of those passionate for the Writing Life.

Now, let's begin ...
Last edited by A_Simple_Poet on Wed Dec 09, 2015 7:31 pm, edited 17 times in total.
User avatar
A_Simple_Poet
Ranger of the North

 
Posts: 2402
Joined: Thu Apr 21, 2005 6:07 pm
Location: At World's End
Top

Re: The Writer's Shrine - A place for the serious wordsmith

Postby Silwen » Fri Nov 23, 2012 5:25 pm

No lightheartedness? Damn.

To be honest, I haven't written anything in a few years and it bothers me. The last piece I wrote was that story your read, Will, The Betrayal. I still like it very much and it was the one that supposedly resembled Nabokov in style (goodness knows why).

I would love to write again, but for some reason I haven't been able to. I am not even sure why, though I suspect it is mainly the fact that my hobbies have... well, not shifted, really... but there are certainly more of them than before. Especially recently I have felt the need to write from time to time, but haven't yet actually sat down to do so. My main problem is that I seem to have run out of things worth writing about. I suspect my life is not terrible enough to be inspiring right now. That's great for me personally, but on a creative writing level it's awful.
User avatar
Silwen
Ringbearer


 
Posts: 14968
Joined: Sun May 05, 2002 4:03 am
Location: Bath, UK
Top

Re: The Writer's Shrine - A place for the serious wordsmith

Postby A_Simple_Poet » Fri Nov 23, 2012 5:43 pm

I am not above lightheartedness. You know that. :mightysquid:

So long as we treat it like a shrine from time to time. :lightening:

To your point, the angst most writerly types feel when they are not writing is the nagging fact that writing is their immortality. That's my opinion, anyway. Many talented people have other hobbies, interests, and legitimate real life distractions. But most of these are not exercises or products that can reveal and preserve (for eternity if we're lucky) the inner creativity and thought process that we vomit out of our minds and into poetically constructed ink on that demanding blank page. As time passes and we age, there is less opportunity to bequeath to our literary progeny the essence of ourselves. I know that makes me anxious to spar with my inner critic and just write my fiction even though it is going to be a terrible first manuscript.

Not sure if others feel this way ...
User avatar
A_Simple_Poet
Ranger of the North

 
Posts: 2402
Joined: Thu Apr 21, 2005 6:07 pm
Location: At World's End
Top

Re: The Writer's Shrine - A place for the serious wordsmith

Postby A_Simple_Poet » Fri Nov 23, 2012 5:43 pm

dp. :angry:
User avatar
A_Simple_Poet
Ranger of the North

 
Posts: 2402
Joined: Thu Apr 21, 2005 6:07 pm
Location: At World's End
Top

Re: The Writer's Shrine - A place for the serious wordsmith

Postby SilverScribe » Fri Nov 23, 2012 8:42 pm

saunters in . . . lays a wreath at the feet of the "Annonymous Author" . . . ;)

Wil, how lovely to see you here again. :)

I am also in the "angry" corner these days when it comes to writing. And it doesn't help that my anger has so many faces, there are days when I feel as though I am careening down a dark, red-lit sulphurous hallway, whilst a horde of howling anger-bots pursue me, snapping at my heels and blowing sparks in my hair . . .

Ah Anger, how I despise thee, let me count thy faces . . . there's anger at the necessity of having to work, anger at my lack of organization (because I really am normally very organized), there's anger when someone or something contrives to stick a branch into the spokes of my creative cart, there's the jealous anger at other writer friends that somehow manage to get up at 4 am so they can write before going to work, and then there's the garden variety of anger, directed at a muse that is flightier than a laden barn swallow trying to escape a bad Monty Python skit.

*sigh*

I have so many stories started but still incompleted, so many outlines scribbled out, squirrelled away and still starved for detail, so many ideas jotted down on this and that and lying about here and there. What I don't have enough of is time and then, when I do have time, I have no ambition. Then there's the days when I find, by some miracle, I have the time and I'm feeling boisterously ambitious and the phone rings and life intrudes. Grar.

But I have a plan. Of course, that may end up going as badly as my writing . . . :P



:D :D :D
Image


~.~.~.~.~.~.~.~.~.~.~.~.~.~.~.~.~.~.~.~
Fur meine Mutter . . . Sie sind für immer in meinem Herzen . . .

A song for our Fallen, but not Forgotten . . . Galadriel's Lament
User avatar
SilverScribe
Scribe, Wanderer, Warrior . . . Bard of Rhudaur and Herald of Manwe


 
Posts: 29663
Joined: Wed Mar 06, 2002 10:17 pm
Location: In the wild . . .
Top

Re: The Writer's Shrine - A place for the serious wordsmith

Postby A_Simple_Poet » Sat Nov 24, 2012 7:31 am

Scribbles! How important to see you here in the Scriptorium. And, of course, Silwen too. :)

Both of you are very talented in the craft and both of you along with myself have indicated that the ambition to write is not where it once was in your lives. I'm interested in speculating why that may be. It can be the first topic at the Shrine because in many ways it must be. There can be no quality writing without zeal. Or am I wrong in suggesting that? Am I even more wrong to assert that without prevailing ambition fueling the NEED to write everyday that we are ... wait for it ... truly NOT writers but some type of hybrid? :shock:

Ooooohhhhhhhh. Snap. He went there. :x

It's not a personal accusation but a rhetorical question. How do we get the ambition back ... especially for middle aged hacks like myself ... more "living", more experimenting, more chocolate milk? More discipline seems an obvious answer. Or IS there an answer? :?
User avatar
A_Simple_Poet
Ranger of the North

 
Posts: 2402
Joined: Thu Apr 21, 2005 6:07 pm
Location: At World's End
Top

Re: The Writer's Shrine - A place for the serious wordsmith

Postby Silwen » Sat Nov 24, 2012 10:08 am

Ah, you found the squid again, Will! I had forgotten all about it.

As usual, I disagree with you on some points (uh oh). I don't think the frustration of not being able to write has anything to do with the frustration of not being able to immortalise ourselves. Mind you, I can't really say that either. There are no absolutes (don't get me started on the postmodern negation of The One Truth etc.), so I am sure for some it may be the source of their frustration. For me writing has not been about immortalisation. I just know that I have a talent there and it is frustrating and sad for me to think that I am not making much use of it nowadays. I used to be very ambitious and deep down I probably still am, and I want to do things that are great. Writing is the closest I will ever come to that unless I somehow get incredibly successful doing something else. It is probably more the desire to be noticed and considered good at what I do rather than having any lasting effect forever and ever.

You suggested that there is no quality writing without zeal. What exactly do you mean by that? There is no quality writing without an innate talent, in my opinion. Coupled with psychological insight, experiences, time for the reflection of those experiences and their gestation there is no quality writing. I am sure we have all seen how incredibly bad ficiton has started making it onto Amazon's bestseller list - stuff that has been written quickly by people with little experience and a lack of skill. Everything has got be happen fast nowadays, apparently: make a fast buck, publish your own stuff instead of waiting for a decent publisher to offer you a deal, take the easy way out. It makes me angry that some actually have success this way, but what can you do?

I often feel I have written about everything there is for me to write about. There is no way for me to write the same thing any better. So what I need is a new area of literary interest, something entirely new to write about, but I suspect I first need to live more, experience more in other areas in order to be able to write about them. And then, of course, having lived those new experiences, it would probably take about 5-10 years for ideas to be generated by them before my being able to put them onto paper. It's a slow process.
User avatar
Silwen
Ringbearer


 
Posts: 14968
Joined: Sun May 05, 2002 4:03 am
Location: Bath, UK
Top

Re: The Writer's Shrine - A place for the serious wordsmith

Postby A_Simple_Poet » Sun Nov 25, 2012 9:41 pm

I knew you would disagree with my "absolutes" approach to the craft and the immortality bit. In fact, I disagree with it myself and merely put it out there as a topic generator. And you're quite right to point out my error in using quality writing. Well, I meant it as an error anyway because I didn't realize I used that word until you pointed it out. I'm not certain I care about the quality of my work anymore ... or at least, for the time being.

So many of the stories I read (as you point out) are of a low quality that as an audience we kind of just suffer them. For me, if the yarn is gripping and believable then generally I overlook any lack of finer style points ... especially in escapist fiction. That's not to say writer's shouldn't dismiss the importancy of quality but sadly it seems to be no longer an overall revered benchmark.
User avatar
A_Simple_Poet
Ranger of the North

 
Posts: 2402
Joined: Thu Apr 21, 2005 6:07 pm
Location: At World's End
Top

Re: The Writer's Shrine - A place for the serious wordsmith

Postby elora » Mon Nov 26, 2012 12:26 am

As I do not believe in fairies, angels or demons, why should I not tread here? Hmmm, oh higher self? Not talking to me? I see (for I do not hear, certainly). And I'm the immature one...

I'm not sure to be honest. Serious wordsmiths...I think, by it's very title, this is a place that the likes of I have no business in. Serious. Wordsmiths. Ooooooohhhh....I should fall on my knees before the Great Serious Wordsmith Smites Me. Serious, Smiting WordSmith...almost alliteration, a lazy, haphazard kind.

Happy to stand corrected if wrong. I very much suspect this is a gathering of people known to one another before. Known...as Serious. Wordsmiths. Not to be trifled with, that. Oh no. Perish the thought. Who would dare trifle with that? It's serious, for one. S.E.R.I.O.U.S.

Damn you, Temptation. I will not trifle. No. Not I. Nope.

Who would trifle? Not I...I hope you find that community of commonly shared values in Wordsmithing that you appear to be searching for. All of us, whether we be serious and/or wordsmiths, need community. Being human, that thirst is hardwired into our brains. Our wonderful, fascinating, brains. Which may or may not be serious. Or wordsmiths...or able to resist a target writ so large as this thread title seems to. I am a victim of my culture. Tall Poppy - where are my scissors! :wink:

Or maybe, I should get cracking on my shoddy screenplay.... :P
User avatar
elora
Ranger of the North

 
Posts: 3371
Joined: Sun May 13, 2001 4:31 pm
Location: Dancing twixt southern stars
Top

Re: The Writer's Shrine - A place for the serious wordsmith

Postby jilbo_baggins_revisited » Mon Nov 26, 2012 10:46 am

Has video not only killed the radio star but co-opted the literary hack as well? All of the hacks have gone on to write horrid screenplays and glitter vampire fiction. All of the poets are baked on something more than pumpkin pie, though the better ones are with Parm. Where have all the writers GONE?


:cry:

This makes me sad, I happen to bake a perfectly exceptional pumpkin pie and I write poetry from time to time completely sober. The fact that I am looking into self publishing would likely make me an outcast here in this thread - so I'll be brief. If I do self pub, I can say that there will be no glittery vampires, angels vs demons or sexy werewolves, and to those that do put them forth to pen I say...bite me! :lol:

Honestly when you say wordsmiths I think of anagrams, or those writing professionally...erm, or those that take apart words and rebundle them into some sort of symbolic and prolific...SERIOUS writing :? Nope not me, but I do admire them from afar even if sometimes I want to tell them to relax and have a piece of my pumpkin pie :D

*is giggling uncontrollably at Elora's response*
User avatar
jilbo_baggins_revisited
Citizen of Imladris
 
Posts: 20
Joined: Fri Sep 07, 2012 2:26 pm
Top

Re: The Writer's Shrine - A place for the serious wordsmith

Postby Silwen » Mon Nov 26, 2012 11:02 am

But I am one of those SERIOUS writers, jilbo! And I am relaxed. Don't stress me out! :lol:
User avatar
Silwen
Ringbearer


 
Posts: 14968
Joined: Sun May 05, 2002 4:03 am
Location: Bath, UK
Top

Re: The Writer's Shrine - A place for the serious wordsmith

Postby elora » Mon Nov 26, 2012 2:25 pm

Has anyone tried glittery werewolves yet? I mean...sure, biologically it makes little sense...unless the fur is the sparkly kind...hmmm...now we're getting into My Little Pony territory. Maybe endow the sparkly beasties with ferocious claws and terrible jaws (rhyming! BLISS :D ). Oh, that is so going to lift me from obscurity. :wink:

Alright, on a less facetious note (yes, I'm capable of that), if I viewed the abundance of tripe about as indicative as the future of humanity's cognitive potential as well as my literary career trajectory, it would be depressing. And, why be sad when you can be mad. So much more action to write about when mad. Sad is so...passive. Mope, brood, weep. Angry is all gnashing of teeth and tantrums - much more colour and movement.

There is a lot of shoddy work around. I actually like that. It helps me distinguish the gems amongst the chaff. It also provides me cover for my own shoddy work. When someone rightfully critiques my work as atrocious, I can point at the crowd of other similarly atrocious works and whine, "But they started it!"

The reality is, not everyone wants to read Serious Wordsmithing. Or poetry. Even those that do don't want a constant diet of it. It's like being forced to eat rice cakes, tuna and spinach. We know it's good for us, but we want some pizza or fried evil yummy stuff every now and again.

As for me, writing is not my career. I am a pragmatist. If I like food and shelter, I need to make a living elsewhere. I adore writing. I do it for fun, certainly. I do it to collaborate and engage with others, certainly. Most of all, I do it for myself, and that's what it is all about for me. I don't take it seriously. At all. I work hard at it, take pride in it, but deliberately veer away from any ambitions to be a serious wordsmith.

I enjoy the work of serious wordsmiths. I adore the use of language, concepts, images and emotions that can be found in the written word. From time to time, I dirty my language centres in tripe. To see what all the hype is about, to inject a sense of superiority in my self-deprecating self, and to underscore what I truly adore about fiction.

And, every now and again, I uncover a real gem. A novel, a proper novel in its original form, as an art piece. There are few writers who can achieve that in this modern time. The very way in which we now follow and unpack stories has irrevocably changed. This is why I adore Salman Rushdie. He writes novels...and he blends the Western time linear approach to the Eastern concentric approach in such a way that my Western, linear mind does not get utterly unravelled. Novels, with symmetry. Art. Do I read Rushdie all the time?

Heavens no! Monotony is not for me. Plus, I like to travel internationally and being an avowed Rushdie reader will probably place me on a border patrol's watch list somewhere in the world. :wink:
User avatar
elora
Ranger of the North

 
Posts: 3371
Joined: Sun May 13, 2001 4:31 pm
Location: Dancing twixt southern stars
Top

Re: The Writer's Shrine - A place for the serious wordsmith

Postby A_Simple_Poet » Mon Nov 26, 2012 6:20 pm

Where were these people when we had the Mad Poets Empire? Silwen, I feel the need to squid them. Should I squid them?

If you want to treat writing like its a Saturday morning cartoon, fine. But let me ask you this. How is that sort of attitude working out for the Scriptorium and all of those who DO treat fiction crafting with the respect it deserves?
User avatar
A_Simple_Poet
Ranger of the North

 
Posts: 2402
Joined: Thu Apr 21, 2005 6:07 pm
Location: At World's End
Top

Re: The Writer's Shrine - A place for the serious wordsmith

Postby elora » Mon Nov 26, 2012 6:55 pm

I try not to sit in judgement and so am not pestered by the need to answer such questions. Avoidance. There's a lot to be said for it. :wink:
User avatar
elora
Ranger of the North

 
Posts: 3371
Joined: Sun May 13, 2001 4:31 pm
Location: Dancing twixt southern stars
Top

Re: The Writer's Shrine - A place for the serious wordsmith

Postby A_Simple_Poet » Mon Nov 26, 2012 7:18 pm

But you started the judging by implying monotony and possibly stodgy terminology in the very name of the thread and that you seemingly wanted to avoid it on those grounds. And perhaps if you want to do that, then I guess do it. The Writers Cafe is pretty light hearted right about now. But this is not a place devoted to a clique or group of former members. Quite the contrary. I'm hoping for a fresh dialogue from many new and diverse voices who are as passionate about writing as I am. Hopefully you are one of them.
User avatar
A_Simple_Poet
Ranger of the North

 
Posts: 2402
Joined: Thu Apr 21, 2005 6:07 pm
Location: At World's End
Top

Re: The Writer's Shrine - A place for the serious wordsmith

Postby elora » Mon Nov 26, 2012 7:26 pm

Ah...see...the "they started it" is catching on! :wink:

I was merely trying via humour to establish what the purpose of this thread might be. While I wish you well, I don't think this thread is the environment for me.

I hope I am not passionate about writing, for that would require me to take myself far too seriously than is good for my health. Or that of those around me. Down, ego, down! Back, I say, beast! :wink:

I don't know the writer's cafe, probably for the same reason that threads like this one aren't a good fit for me. If I speak without the use of humour, directly, then threads like this one seem a little too big for boots I can't comfortably wear (without tripping over them).

Now, courses for horses. Live and let live. Now that you've confirmed what this thread seemed to be about, I'll be gone and let you enjoy your serious, passionate, wordsmithing.
User avatar
elora
Ranger of the North

 
Posts: 3371
Joined: Sun May 13, 2001 4:31 pm
Location: Dancing twixt southern stars
Top

Re: The Writer's Shrine - A place for the serious wordsmith

Postby A_Simple_Poet » Mon Nov 26, 2012 7:56 pm

Well. That didn't go well. Honestly, Silwen, I need you non stop to interpret my meaning to the rest of humanity. I thought there was such promise there too. I sensed a level of dislike for me only rivalled by when you and I first met. How have you endured me all these years? But I'm off topic.

I have been taking a reboot approach to my writing practices. In the past I used to scorn writing prompts and exercises. I came across one that suggested using current events as an impetus for plot development when your muse has packed her bags and fled to Paris. I am giving that one a shot since plot has been weak for me as opposed to character development. Does anyone else enjoy writing prompts?
User avatar
A_Simple_Poet
Ranger of the North

 
Posts: 2402
Joined: Thu Apr 21, 2005 6:07 pm
Location: At World's End
Top

Re: The Writer's Shrine - A place for the serious wordsmith

Postby jilbo_baggins_revisited » Mon Nov 26, 2012 9:06 pm

I certainly didn't mean to offend with all my talk about glittery vampires :wink: this supernatural genre does seem to be trending and people are slurping them up faster than 32 oz sugary drinks in a New York minute. And I never said I didn't read them :P I just can't write them.

I have come to the point where my new SERIOUS challenge therein lies in sci-fi and fantasy. To me it is the hardest thing to write when you are literally creating/spawning entire worlds that need to make sense and come together cohesively.

To clarify, I would like to think of myself as a serious writer because I do have a passion for it. But serious writers usually have a much more intense dedication and probably don't lose focus like me. Since I am still unpublished and a bit flighty I am not a serious writer :roll: and I have been known to edit myself to unconsciousness.

It is simply dreaded B word, Silwen. Even us unserious writers get writers block. You certainly don't need to be depressed or have more life experience, it's all inside your noggin and just needs a laxative. :(

I have been taking a reboot approach to my writing practices. In the past I used to scorn writing prompts and exercises. I came across one that suggested using current events as an impetus for plot development when your muse has packed her bags and fled to Paris. I am giving that one a shot since plot has been weak for me as opposed to character development. Does anyone else enjoy writing prompts?


This is a very good suggestion. Current events at this current time could make for one of the best horror stories ever written and imagine a world full of chaos. Times have changed and are totally unpredictable. It sounds like a good base to start.

I'm a spur of the moment writer. I tend to gush and pour at a moments notice driven solely by emotion so I love prompts. Prolly why I may never actually publish a novel :lol:
User avatar
jilbo_baggins_revisited
Citizen of Imladris
 
Posts: 20
Joined: Fri Sep 07, 2012 2:26 pm
Top

Re: The Writer's Shrine - A place for the serious wordsmith

Postby Silwen » Tue Nov 27, 2012 6:29 am

Ack! Banish the word "prolly" and things will be fine. ;) That is one of my pet peeves. Yeah... I am particular about language. :oops:

Will, pass on the squids!

Writing prompts are quite good. I am also a spur-of-the-moment writer though I edit my writing before actually putting fingers to keyboard. That seems to work the best for me. I can't seem to plan what I am going to write about, which bothers me only because it makes writing longer fiction almost impossible. I would like to write something as long as a novel, but I find that planning destroys my creativity. It has to be spontaneous for me or it just won't work. So it is no surprise that I started out with poetry and then moved to short fiction later. The only book I have ever written (and published) was non-ficiton -- that work's well with planning because you don't have to be quite as creative as when you are making up an entire story: you already know where you are heading with non-fiction before you start because there is a particular aim, a particular idea or fact you are trying to prove. My creative writing is more spontaneous and organic in its development.

I found prompts to be very helpful when I took creative writing classes at university and some really good poems and stories came from them. When I feel the need to write again, but can't for the life of me come up with anything to write about, I do sometimes use them. Usually the result is good, btu not always. Will, "The Betrayal" was one of those prompted stories. I think all I had done was choose 5 random word from the dictionary that needed to be in the story. It is still one of my favourites.

I thought a bit more about the immortality idea, Will. I still maintain that for me at least, immortality is not the reason I write. However, there is something quite similar that does seem important to me: recognition. It's not recognition over an indefinite period of time, but I would like my writing and skill to be recognised during my lifetime. That's probably not going to happen, but one can dream and it certainly helps to come up with good stuff.

Jilbo has already given her definition of the SERIOUS writer. I wonder what everyone else's is because I suspect we all have a different definition: some suspect that SERIOUS writing is only for the skilled and talented, others infer that only those who devote themselves entirely to the craft can be labelled as such. To me a serious writer does not need to have any published work yet, though it is their aim. A serious writer is just someone who takes writing seriously (which does not restrict them to any particular genre or style), knows how to use language to its greatest effect to achieve a very particular aim. It is someone who certainly knows the basics of grammar and spelling, to say the least. It is NOT someone just out to make money with something hastily thrown together, dealing with a subject matter that they know is appealing right now. And it is not fan fiction. 50 shades of rubbish.
User avatar
Silwen
Ringbearer


 
Posts: 14968
Joined: Sun May 05, 2002 4:03 am
Location: Bath, UK
Top

Re: The Writer's Shrine - A place for the serious wordsmith

Postby Silwen » Tue Nov 27, 2012 6:31 am

How have you endured me all these years?

I was more patient back then. :D
User avatar
Silwen
Ringbearer


 
Posts: 14968
Joined: Sun May 05, 2002 4:03 am
Location: Bath, UK
Top

Re: The Writer's Shrine - A place for the serious wordsmith

Postby A_Simple_Poet » Thu Nov 29, 2012 3:04 pm

I've been sick. You don't want to know how ... or with what. But I do want to respond a bit before moving on in my next post this weekend.

jilbo_baggins_revisited wrote:I certainly didn't mean to offend with all my talk about glittery vampires :wink: this supernatural genre does seem to be trending and people are slurping them up faster than 32 oz sugary drinks in a New York minute. And I never said I didn't read them :P I just can't write them.


None taken. I don't condone poorly written supernatural ... I just don't like watching a myth get squashed into vanilla. Write what you want. Piggy back off Tolkien if you want like Elora's well written ... dare I say, serious? ... novel effort on the Legacy thread. I just say be passionate about what you do. :wink:

jilbo_baggins_revisited wrote:I have come to the point where my new SERIOUS challenge therein lies in sci-fi and fantasy. To me it is the hardest thing to write when you are literally creating/spawning entire worlds that need to make sense and come together cohesively.


You're preaching to the choir. The problem is that everything has been "done." I strive for Sword & Sorcery because there is no agenda other than the base myth of one gloomy protaganist is on a quest and might save a girl. Sort of like what is hard wired into the minds of most contemporary males. If they deny that. they're lying. 8)

jilbo_baggins_revisited wrote:To clarify, I would like to think of myself as a serious writer because I do have a passion for it. But serious writers usually have a much more intense dedication and probably don't lose focus like me.


Tell that to George R. R. Martin. Book six, George. WHERE'S BOOK SIX???????????? >-O

jilbo_baggins_revisited wrote:Since I am still unpublished and a bit flighty I am not a serious writer :roll: and I have been known to edit myself to unconsciousness.


Wrong. Publication is not an indicator of passion or zeal. Arguably, it's not even a benchmark on talent. It's more about an audience angle because there are 50 shades of published horse poop out there that the public just laps up. :nono:

Silwen wrote:That seems to work the best for me. I can't seem to plan what I am going to write about, which bothers me only because it makes writing longer fiction almost impossible. I would like to write something as long as a novel, but I find that planning destroys my creativity. It has to be spontaneous for me or it just won't work.


I'm sure Anna Karenia started out spontaneous. Not. You make a valid point. Hemingway would agree which is why he advised that writers leave off writing at a cliff hanger point when finishing a session regardless of word count. This practice keeps a writer motivated in their work. If that strategy fails, then perhaps the work isn't worth the writing. :?

Silwen wrote:I thought a bit more about the immortality idea, Will. I still maintain that for me at least, immortality is not the reason I write. However, there is something quite similar that does seem important to me: recognition. It's not recognition over an indefinite period of time, but I would like my writing and skill to be recognised during my lifetime. That's probably not going to happen, but one can dream and it certainly helps to come up with good stuff.


You. Wrote. A. BOOK!!!!!!!!!!!!! A PUBLISHED WORK OF QUALITY NON-FICTION THAT SITS ON MY SHELF!!! 'Nuff Said!!!!!!!!! :angry:

Silwen wrote:A serious writer is just someone who takes writing seriously (which does not restrict them to any particular genre or style), knows how to use language to its greatest effect to achieve a very particular aim. It is someone who certainly knows the basics of grammar and spelling, to say the least.


Can I get an amen? :happydance:

Silwen wrote:And it is not fan fiction.


Twist that knife a little deeper into my chest. :mightysquid:

It IS NOT fan fiction if you are writing in a pre-developed RPG world setting and adding to it, like Forgotten Realms or Warhammer. It IS fan fiction when the novel eclipses the effort of the orginator. (e.g. The Revenge of Radagast and the Entwives)

Silwen wrote:I was more patient back then.


And deserve a trophy for it. :D
User avatar
A_Simple_Poet
Ranger of the North

 
Posts: 2402
Joined: Thu Apr 21, 2005 6:07 pm
Location: At World's End
Top

Re: The Writer's Shrine - Free of Mistletoe. Writers Only.

Postby elora » Sat Dec 01, 2012 6:07 pm

like Elora's well written ... dare I say, serious? ... novel


Oh, touché! :lol:

The thing is, Legacy ain't a serious thing between my co-writer and I. We do that for recreational purposes.

I think, for me, serious has a lot of additional connotations. I have been described by my colleagues as a "very serious insect". I work in a very serious field (medicine). I have a very serious job, one that if I make an error has many nasty, serious consequences for those around me, strangers, my family and me. Lives can be lost, terrible torment suffered, people can go to jail, lives ruined.

Something I do recreationally is important, but not serious to me. And thank goodness for that, for if the stuff I do for fun and to keep me human were as important as the serious stuff I do, then I'd be insufferably insane. Presently, I am levelled out at sufferably insane. The difference between those two states is important (but not serious).

I think someone can be dedicated, committed without being "serious" in writing. I think some of my best work is the stuff I dash off with barely a moment's thought. Disjointed, yes. But the concept is primal, untainted. The colour and energy of the idea hasn't been lost - yet. I don't publish such things. They're for me. I take such jottings, little concept snapshots of an interaction, an event, characters, and file them away. I draw on them later, refine them or discard them, for public work.

I tried serious writing once. I wrote a novel. It was serious writing. It was serious effort. It was serious risk. It was seriously atrocious too. Far too much seriousness going on with that. I learnt a lot. Structure, arc, tension....planning....I had a concept but it lacked the legs to carry it all the way. It still has potential, it could go the distance. Not Tolkien-esque at all, nor particularly likely to be a classic either but I am OK with that. It's been gathering dust for 10 long years.

I haven't gone back to it for a good reason. Now that I know what I know, it wold take serious effort to beat it into shape. And, with that admission there enters the "serious" beastie again. So I let it sit. Because I have enough serious in my life.
User avatar
elora
Ranger of the North

 
Posts: 3371
Joined: Sun May 13, 2001 4:31 pm
Location: Dancing twixt southern stars
Top

Re: The Writer's Shrine - Free of Mistletoe. Writers Only.

Postby PatriotBlade » Sat Dec 01, 2012 10:53 pm

May I join you? I haven't been writing seriously (not even rps) for several years and it's been nagging at me. I feel lost and unbalanced in my life when I don't write. Writing is my passion and very few people in my life understand this.
User avatar
PatriotBlade
Ranger of the North

 
Posts: 4363
Joined: Fri Jan 04, 2002 2:03 pm
Location: My own crazy, mixed up world.
Top

Re: The Writer's Shrine - Free of Mistletoe. Writers Only.

Postby jilbo_baggins_revisited » Sun Dec 02, 2012 7:55 am

I feel lost and unbalanced in my life when I don't write. Writing is my passion and very few people in my life understand this.

I did as well for several years and the effort became all consuming. Therein the danger lies. I came to realize that my peace came when I backed off and become not so SERIOUS about it, but that was just my experience. I was also lucky enough to have support for my passion. I would hope you find more of it, even if you have to seek it out :)
As I am going through another bout of blockage and the withdrawal symptoms have settled to a mere numbing annoyance I am hoping I am in recovery.Sometimes I'd pour so much into my writing it would leave me empty and off kilter for a bit afterwards.

I would hope the answer is somewhere in the middle. If I do calm my spurting in an effort to come up for air on some project I thought was a golden idea at the time, I begin to find cracks in it, tear it apart and thus, lose focus. Eventually it crumbles to the floor in great piles of dust and ash. I find myself pages and pages in with no clear ending in site and all the time spent - is time lost. Methinks critical perfectionism and self-inflicted quill flogging may be a large part of my particular problem :roll:

So...I cry for a bit over all the money spent on professional artists that were paid to bring my once all consuming characters to life and I found myself surrounded by a cork board full of tacked up cackling ghosts forever mocking me :cry:

I think a passionate writer is different from a SERIOUS writer. :Q Prepares for the eventual clubbing :lol:

Perhaps instead of defining a SERIOUS writer we could start categorizing the different types of writers. For instance we now have SERIOUS writers, RECREATIONAL writers, PASSIONATE writers and perhaps even THERAPEUTIC writers? Or is that not a serious enough discussion for this thread? :D

I officially declare myself in the PASSIONATE writer category :P
User avatar
jilbo_baggins_revisited
Citizen of Imladris
 
Posts: 20
Joined: Fri Sep 07, 2012 2:26 pm
Top

Re: The Writer's Shrine - Free of Mistletoe. Writers Only.

Postby PatriotBlade » Sun Dec 02, 2012 8:01 pm

Perhaps COMPULSIVE writer should be added to the list, because as I said, my balance comes from writing out all the wild tales that are floating around in my head.

And when I said "serious", I meant as in writing regularly and with purpose.
User avatar
PatriotBlade
Ranger of the North

 
Posts: 4363
Joined: Fri Jan 04, 2002 2:03 pm
Location: My own crazy, mixed up world.
Top

Re: The Writer's Shrine - Free of Mistletoe. Writers Only.

Postby A_Simple_Poet » Mon Dec 03, 2012 6:57 pm

PatriotBlade wrote:And when I said "serious", I meant as in writing regularly and with purpose.


That's all I ever meant when crafting this thread. But since people seem to object to the word, I removed it from the marquee. Patriotblade, Elora, Jilbo, Silwen. You ARE ALL WELCOME because whatever words you use, all of you have demonstrated zeal for the noble craft of writing by participating here. Can I use zeal? :lol:

I have so much to touch on with the last few responses, but I've been rather ill the last few days and I can't think clearly. If someone can pick up the slack and dialogue while I recover than I know this thread has a pulse. If not, then if should be buried with the Writer's Cafe. I will leave you with a topic. In the 21st century, is the writing a traditional novel an endangered art? :?
User avatar
A_Simple_Poet
Ranger of the North

 
Posts: 2402
Joined: Thu Apr 21, 2005 6:07 pm
Location: At World's End
Top

Re: The Writer's Shrine - Free of Mistletoe. Writers Only.

Postby elora » Tue Dec 04, 2012 2:59 am

Hmmmm....interesting question, oh Poet. And cudos on use of the word "zeal"!

Speaking only for myself, and far too loudly, I find straight thinking is vastly over rated, unless I am being paid to think straight, of course. *Ahem* Professional facade maintained! Disaster averted.

I think the art of story telling surely must evolve. I'm reasonably sure that it has in the past, given the fact that we no longer rely exclusively on pictograms on cave walls...though for some tales (mine), that might be a laudable (sorry, "zeal" inspired me) improvement.

The novel has evolved from what it was to what it is. I find myself caught. To stay static is to atrophy. Change is good. Plus, if I am anti-change then it seems to suggest an unacceptable corollory to my vain self - I am getting old and rigid. But on the other hand, I adore the novel. The old fashioned, 18th and 19th century versions. I don't want to see them fall by the way side, discarded and pallid (sorry, "laudable" inspired me - I'll try to use contemporaneous language from now on).

Zounds!

(Dangnammit - OK, from now on...)

Gadzooks! - (Nope...still hopelessly anachronistic. (Eep! It's getting worse. It's exacerbating. (Cripes, moving in professional speak now, followed by cultural stereotyping of MYSELF! Oh, make it STOP!)))

I suspect I will have to suck up (ah, that's better) whatever the outcome. But I also suspect that while change is inevitable, we'll still see novels about for a while yet. Perhaps that is blind hope typing/talking. Life has yet to thrash the optimism from me, and no: that was not an invitation to attempt to correct that. :wink:

Full front reality assault? No thanks!

Oh, as for writing as compulsive behaviour or therapy...I do admit that I find writing helps. Same with dancing. If I do not write or dance, then something is very wrong with my day. Am I cheating on my writing with dancing, cheating on my dancing with writing or cheating on both with holding down a day job? Not sure. Not sure if I ever want to figure it out. It's such a delightful first world problem to have. :D

Hope you feel better soon, Poet.
User avatar
elora
Ranger of the North

 
Posts: 3371
Joined: Sun May 13, 2001 4:31 pm
Location: Dancing twixt southern stars
Top

Re: The Writer's Shrine - Free of Mistletoe. Writers Only.

Postby PatriotBlade » Tue Dec 04, 2012 9:52 am

elora wrote:Oh, as for writing as compulsive behaviour or therapy...I do admit that I find writing helps. Same with dancing. If I do not write or dance, then something is very wrong with my day. Am I cheating on my writing with dancing, cheating on my dancing with writing or cheating on both with holding down a day job? Not sure. Not sure if I ever want to figure it out. It's such a delightful first world problem to have. :D


You HAD to bring up dancing didn't you? LOL! Another of my passions.

Anyhoo... I don't think novel writing is a dying art, per-se, but I do think the quality of acceptable wring has gone WAY down. In recent years I started reading a "Best Sellers List" fantasy series. I have a tendency to rely too hard on my editor friend, so if I read something and it's so bad, that I want to take a red pen to it.... It's bad! And this is supposed to be coming from a Best Selling author? What I send to my editor friend is better than that, and I don't have to rely on smut as filler to make my books ginormous, to match my ego. I only read three of a ten book series before I decided that I would NEVER waste any more of my time with it.
User avatar
PatriotBlade
Ranger of the North

 
Posts: 4363
Joined: Fri Jan 04, 2002 2:03 pm
Location: My own crazy, mixed up world.
Top

Re: The Writer's Shrine - Free of Mistletoe. Writers Only.

Postby jilbo_baggins_revisited » Sat Dec 08, 2012 6:54 am

Am I cheating on my writing with dancing, cheating on my dancing with writing or cheating on both with holding down a day job? Not sure. Not sure if I ever want to figure it out. It's such a delightful first world problem to have. :D


Definitely cheating on both whilst holding down a day job :wink:

Though I must admit through spurts of unemployment over the last several years I did find I got no more writing done than when I was working full time :roll: Mostly because I was depressed to be out of work. I remember when I was younger I wrote better and much more when I was depressed. That is not the case anymore, perhaps reality plays a big part of that.

As for traditional novels - I am still finding them in all sorts of settings. I think the trends eventually change with the times and people will tire of a current rage. :lol:

As for any writers here - don't we all attempt to focus on character, plot and eventual resolution? Have we not had ideas that would appeal to the masses? It sounds like most of us still hold onto traditional novel ideas and values so..heck no! not dying - not endangered :D

PB - I have to agree.I'll be reading a novel series where I think they might be onto something then after a book or 2 they veer off into some unexplained direction for no apparent reason and I am left feeling bereft - disappointed, frustrated and angry and somehow empty - and to think I could have bought a grande white chocolate mocha and had more satisfaction :wink:

Wil - I adore George R. R. Martin (Game of Thrones) and yet I hate him! I get so angry with these books when nothing good happens to any of my favorite characters. I howl and I scream - I cry and I swear that never again will I buy one of his books... Then I'm like a madwoman as I frantically scramble to pre-order or buy the next one as soon it arrives in any form I can get it >-O

Does that mean he's a good writer? Or does that mean we can't wait to see if, FINALLY - for just one tiny breath of an instant something good may happen to any one left in the Stark family? :(
User avatar
jilbo_baggins_revisited
Citizen of Imladris
 
Posts: 20
Joined: Fri Sep 07, 2012 2:26 pm
Top

Re: The Writer's Shrine - Free of Mistletoe. Writers Only.

Postby A_Simple_Poet » Tue Dec 11, 2012 10:04 am

I was sick. Now I'm back. Don't everyone cheer at once. :evil:

I remember when I was younger I wrote better and much more when I was depressed. That is not the case anymore, perhaps reality plays a big part of that.


Interesting topic prompt. I agree with that and can relate. In fact that's why I'm not a Poet anymore because I wrote all of my best poetry when depressed. But then it would seem that reality itself is depressing enough to generate fruitful abundance of verse or prose. And yet I'm in therapy trying NOT to be depressed but I find it more sickening then eating moose loins to write a story that has a happy ending. So here's the question for the group ... Is there no such thing as a "happy" writer? :?

Does that mean he's a good writer?


My thought is ... yes. We keep buying his books. A good writer is a gripping storyteller that keeps you wanting. I don't necessarily agree with grammar and style being the measure of a good writer. They are truly necessary but not key to the creative impetus of storytelling. Style is sculpted and there are editors around for grammar (that's not to say they are unimportant, just not crucial in the outset of a manuscript). :D

It's such a delightful first world problem to have.


Indeed. Thanks for staying Elora, your insights are zippendicular. :)
User avatar
A_Simple_Poet
Ranger of the North

 
Posts: 2402
Joined: Thu Apr 21, 2005 6:07 pm
Location: At World's End
Top

Next

Return to Writing: The Scriptorium of Imladris

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 0 guests