A blog about writing and all things story…
Recently I was asked to provide my critique on a fellow author’s new novel. Jack Remick has written a novel titled BLOOD, and I was honored to receive a preview copy to read. To see an excerpt of my critique please visit the publisher, Camel Press’s site at http://blood.camelpress.com/?p=214
Someone else, whom I respect greatly, asked me why I write. He was bewildered, after having known me in the business world, as to why I would spend so much time and effort on something that may never make a dime and that is so filled with fruitless rejection.
“Creating stories is how I get to know the world and hopefully understand my place in it.” I told him. He didn’t understand, and shook his head in the most condescending way. You may have seen that look on someone’s face before.
“It’s how I connect to people, places and things around me. How I experience the world and remember where I’ve traveled.” I explained to his doubting eyes. “Creating stories around those experiences satisfies me and completes the journey. For example I will never forget sitting in a small cafe in Galway Ireland – nearly broke, as I’d gone way over my tight travel budget. I ordered a small coffee and a croissant. It was all I could afford. I took out my journal and began to write.
An attractive dark haired woman sat across the sapphire coloured room next to long luxurious burgundy-coloured drapes with her much younger lover nibbling on her fingers. She asked the waiter to ask me if I was a writer.
I had never claimed it before; never said, “I am a writer” out loud. When he asked, I hesitated, but then a sense of pride and excitement filled me. “Yes, I’m a writer.” Why not, I figured; I was in a far away land. Nobody else would ever hear my fragile claim.
A few moments later the elegant woman in her chic black cashmere slowed as she passed my table, young puppy lover in tow. “I like the writer’s very much.” She said. Her French accent as thick as those red velvet drapes on the walls.
When I asked the waiter for my bill he said she had paid it. As long as I live, and no matter how much money I do or do not make, that experience of the day I claimed “I am a writer” will remain a vivid, tingling journey in my journal, heart, and soul. Thank you, to that seductive French woman and her blue eyed lover for seeing me as who I dreamed I could be, and for making me realize being a writer was far more important than the amount of money I had in my purse.”
My questioning friend did not understand, and never will. But I do, and that’s all that matters.
Why do you write? Have you claimed, “I am a writer” with your outside voice?
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By Miri Elm
(re)Living History, with occasional attempts at humor and the rare pot-luck subject. Sorry, it's BYOB. All I have is Hamm's.
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