I call this entry Grandma because of great advice. My grandmother is a master reader because she reads everything. Don’t get me wrong, reading is like a conversation and if that conversation doesn’t flow in our direction, boredom is a good reason to drop the book. Grandma looks for the homemaker, dreamy type books that include history or unique twists about life and heaven. Okay, so I can’t describe her type of reading. She doesn’t go after the lust but she does like the love and she also claims that a good novel is seeing everyone’s lives destroyed and then put back together in the end: in other words, life. Mess it up and put it back together. Think of it as gossip. People aren’t interested in the girl from college whose life is going so well. But they are interested in the guy who lost his business and then ended up with a stomach disease. He was just so awesome once and so prideful, so now he’s getting what he deserves, right? It’s gossip, it’s interesting, it’s what sells. Is your book interesting?
Have you ever stood on a mountain and listened to the bagpipes in the distance? Close your eyes, feel the breezes encircle you with the music, and then look around you and realize that you are alive. What does that mean to you? Every day I read the news and sometimes I wonder why we put so much effort into life when everything might fall apart without notice. We have good days and bad days, joys and tragedies. In truth, life is a mess, but it’s ours, and, as far as we know, it’s the only one we get. We are born and then we die and replacements come into this world every day. But our experiences are valuable, at least to us and our families, so let’s write them down.
What does this mean to the fiction writer? Words are glorious and expressive. Pull them out of the intelligences all around you and paint beautiful scenes and stories for all of us to read. Write with your heart, your dreams, everything that you can.
A professor once told me to “just write it.” He also told the class to never hold anything back. Don’t “save” stories. Try to combine everything into the book you’re writing now. If you try to save scenes or characters for other books, you are jeopardizing your current book. Plus, what if you never get to the other books?
This can be applied to life: Don’t save your experiences for later. Take that trip you’ve always wanted to take, or take that art class. I love being reminded about the kids who save their new bikes or toys for later and then they outgrow them or move on. Keeping our belongings is perhaps important but using them to help us live life is probably the better choice. So, let’s live that dream, ride that bike, take that vacation, or write that book.
So many people want to write a book but they think they shouldn't even try, because it's too hard? Because others succeed and they don't think they can do it. There's a secret in all success: just try it, just write it.
Have you ever read the book, The Secret by Rhonda Byrne or watched the movie? That’s not the secret I’m talking about, and yet it is. I do have to say that I believe in her book %100. Each novel and each character has a drive, a secret to accomplish. There are at least three motivations in each novel that I’ve dissected. The first secret or motivation is revealed in chapter one or two and then others are added as characters are introduced. For example, back to A Month of Sundays. The main character,Garnet, doesn’t pick up on why her aunt June is so excited to meet her, and the reader is also perplexed. Here lies the Secret. Later we learn that June has cancer and wanted to get to know her brother’s child. But first, this was a secret, which is not discovered until chapter about chapter 5. But, before the secret is completely revealed, another secret has to be opened, this is June’s secret room, which is not a huge deal, but it helps.
The Secrets must continue. When June’s secret is revealed, there’s another secret that was only hinted upon when the novel started and was actually forgotten(by me and probably most readers) by chapter 10, but it resurfaces when April discovers that her Aunt is dying. This secret is April’s father’s identity, and perhaps his innocence in abandoning her. Thus leading to another secret: Her mother’s! Her mother never told her father that she existed.
So, our characters have secrets and are motivated by secrets. And they also play by the law of Rhonda Byrne’s Secret. They are entitled to being granted everything they want by the laws of the universe. But, they receive nothing until after their trials and it is the author who must provide those trials so the characters and readers can learn, suffer, laugh, live, and succeed together. Get one of our bundles to help you publish your book.
Byrne, Rhonda. The Secret