Friday, November 24, 2006

To write is to live

I'm sitting in my car at a red light the other day, thinking about my trilogy, when it dawns on me there has not been a time since I was in fourth grade that I have not wanted to be a fiction novelist. Then it dawns on me that most other people don't have my dream.

I can't imagine not wanting to be a writer. Truly, I can't. If I woke up tomorrow, and suddenly I did not want to write any more, I don't think I would have any reason to live. I'm not suggesting I would kill myself, but I believe I would go through the rest of my life like a zombie, as if I had no soul, plodding along from one useless task to the next.

And I often wonder why other people aren't the same. I realize other people have their own dreams, but very many people seem to NOT have any dreams. They just go to work, go home, eat, watch TV, go to bed, then start the whole thing over the next day. I don't understand this. And I don't mean to be making a value judgment about those type of people, I'm just saying I don't understand.

If I didn't write, I couldn't breath.


cyn said...

what a terrific post, ty. my husband isn't very creative,either. he's a computer guy, he gets creative in that sense. sometimes, i wish i were more passionate about writing myself. it hasn't seized me as i see it does others.

Ty said...

Cindy, funny thing is: I don't consider myself overly passionate about writing. Like everybody, sometimes I'm busy, tired or just plain out lazy. Still, I try to work on my writing every day. That doesn't seem passionate to me as much as it feels desperate.

And I realize other people aren't creative, but I honestly don't understand what keeps them going. I know for some people it's family or their job, but I just don't think that way. Not that I don't care about my family or my job, but I just don't consider those aspects of my life to be the "end-all, be-all" of my existence. I'm sure I would feel different if I had children. Instead, I've got a beagle and three rabbits! And I love them.

Howard von Darkmoor said...

Well, Ty, thanks for sharing this. I do understand you, yet I don't. I think we all have dreams; some are so simple, to you or I they may not seem so, and some are so elaborate or lofty they're above even us who can imagine almost anything. That's what I understand. That, and your need to write. What I don't understand is that I don't feel the same. I've been thinking about this 'need' since I first read your post about 2 hours ago. Maybe it's because I'm in a writing funk right now, but what I need right now is to read - not write. I want to write, but my want to curl up with a great - not good, but great - book is paramount right now. I've even seen some stunning sights today that gave me ideas and normally would have sent me scurrying to the writing tablets but I just can't get up the energy to write. Yet here I sit posting on your blog, and Steve's and my own. It seems so easy to do so and post on SFReader and find the day is gone and I've accomplished nothing.

Ah, well. I wrote my first story when I was 8. I've still got it, somewhere around here. "The March of the Vegetables" it was called and my mom typed it up for me. But when I was in 4th grade my dream was to be a Supreme Court Justice. Oh how life changes (lowers?) expectations.

Sorry to hog your blog, as it were. Thanks for all of your insightful comments and posts throughout the places we both frequent.

Ty said...

I perfectly understand the need to read a GREAT book. I read so much garbage, and so much so-so stuff, that I'm blown away when I get around to great material. Starship Troopers did that for me. Most of Stephen King's works do that for me. Right now, "World War Z" is doing that for me, the best book I've read in at least 6 months (a little slow at first, but it builds after about 50 pages).

For me, GREAT reading makes me want to write all the more.

And I want to add ... until I had my "eureka" moment in my car the other day, I had never thought of myself as someone with the "need" to write. But then when I was really honest with myself, I realized I am one of those people. I'm finishing up with a trilogy, and to be honest, I don't expect it to sell; not because I think it sucks (though I still have plenty of rough spots to clean up), but because I realize the chances of getting published are pretty dim. But that doesn't matter to me. I'll move on. I'll file away my novel, or self-publish it on, but I'll move on ... and then I'll write the next novel, and I've already got several ideas for it.

I don't think I'm a great writer. I think I'm a decent writer. I also don't think I'm a great thinker, with something of new or of world-import to say, but I'm not a total idiot and I have my own views of the human condition.
All that being said, I do believe I'm good enough to get published. It's just going to take time and effort. To me it's beyond being a matter of faith ... it will happen, I just don't know when or how.

Ty said...

And Howard ... I wanted to add ... every writer has their bad days, or weeks or months or sometimes even years. Don't beat yourself up about it. I bet after you read something great, you'll be back at the keyboard.

zornhau said...

Yeah. Been there. A couple of times I've been ill, and lost the bit which drives the creativity. Very odd feeling.

However, I've also got my swords.

cyn said...

ty, i think having kids brought me back to writing. because i needed something for *myself*. i didn't just want to be a mom. i'm more than that. all my artistic endeavors are free threapy. =) it also keeps my brain working, instead of being complete mush.

Howard von Darkmoor said...

Thanks for the pushes and the support, gang! It's great to know people like y'all. I'm getting things back on track and reading Ty's and Steve's blogs has been very beneficial in all regards.

Enjoy your day - each and every one!