I’m going to write a novel. For the love of all that is holy, why?

There is creative reading as well as creative writing.

                                                        – Ralph Waldo Emerson

A writer is a reader first

You’ve heard it before: in order to be a good writer you must be well read (we’ll discuss this lovely concept in another post). Read as much as you can and expose yourself to as many diverse authors as you can, writers learn to write from reading others who are masters of writing, and other wonderful pieces of advice that do little to ebb away our anxiety as writers.

I discussed in my I don’t need you to be my hero post that it is important to find your voice as a writer through writing. I made the argument that our influences make us who we are as writers, but we shouldn’t get lost trying to be Fitzgerald, Hemingway or their likes.

So we’ve dealt with the possible extreme of losing your voice through excessive imitation, without exploration of your own writing voice. We’ve yet to look at the debilitating effects of not reading at all. Debilitating? Yes, and I’m sure after this video you’ll be using such words to describe the side effects of not reading at all.

Anyone who wants to be an author needs to watch this video:

What are some of the things that have made you the writer you are? Is being “well read” all that important? What’s your favourite line from the video? I can’t decide, but “I’ve never even seen you read a book,” is golden.

My Music Mondays

What do you do when you write? What I mean to say is are you engaged in any other activities or are you solely focussed on the words? For me, I sometimes need complete silence. I can’t even take the clicking of the keyboard. Other times I need a song playing in the background, something to ground my ideas and words. Like I said in My Music Picks: Peaky Blinders, if a picture paints a thousand words a lyric evokes a thousand images. When I’m listening to certain songs I can see entire scenes playing out before my eyes. When I reach for them, try to commit them to paper, they vanish. It’s sort of like a musical trance where my stories are made vivid and tangible by music. And as soon as the music stops so do the moving scenes. It’s weird but I can’t be the only one out there who feels this way.

Here are some of the songs I listen to when I write. I don’t always go for these songs because I go based on how I’m feeling at the moment.

Anything Radiohead works for me. This playlist is one of the only playlists I can listen to while studying.

I love Soley’s sound and lyrics. When I first heard Pretty Face I wasn’t feeling it, but like anything good she has grown on me.

I’d love to hear what you listen to for inspiration. We can compile everyone’s personal music picks into an album of creative awesomeness. Leave me a comment with your music picks and I’ll definitely give them a listen. Let me know what you think of mine too.

Why the hell are you a writer?

Who inspired you to write, to dabble into the crazy, uncertain, beautiful world of the writer? For some of you maybe it was an inspirational quote,  a poem or a novel you were forced to read in elementary school. For some, it may have been a painting or a writer in their lives.

I know that for me it was a teacher I had for Gr. 11 English. That was probably one of the most essential courses I had taken in not only high school but in my education as a writer. We read King Lear, Death of a Salesman, Of Mice and Men and Lord of the Flies. She made the writing of dead men come to life. I hadn’t been exposed to writing the way I was in that class. I had never felt so much emotion while reading a literary work as I did while reading King Lear. So thank you Ms Solet- Louis for the gift I will never return but hopefully always re-gift.

Enough of me. Find what made you write so whenever you feel like it isn’t worth it you can return to that text, person or place and regain that wonder of writing. Writing is a journey, we’re always trying to move forward with our tales, venturing into unexplored places, but don’t fear the venture backwards. Don’t fear the backwords journey.

What, who, or where makes you write, paint, sculpt, compose and read?

 

 

Bloggers, I Choose You!

Liebster Awards

This is, sadly, not a Pokemon post. Sometime during the day I was nominated for an award I’d never heard of by Martha Ann Kennedy. Thanks Martha, it’s nice to know you think The Backwords is award worthy. I haven’t checked out the full rules for the award, but I have a general idea of what I need to do. It’s a great way to build your WordPress community. I don’t know what the prize actually is, but hey, I don’t mind entering. Here we go!

Here are the rules for the Liebster Awards:

1. Each nominee must link back the person who nominated them.
2. Answer the 10 questions which are given to you by the nominator.
3. Nominate 10 other bloggers for this award who have less than 200 followers                                                                                             4. Create 10 questions for your nominees to answer.                                                                                                                                              5. Let the nominees know that they have been nominated by going to their blog and notifying them.

Martha’s Questions:

1)What inspired you to begin writing a blog? I really just wanted a space to write and think outside of school, friends and home. It seemed like the right thing to do, especially since I want to write for a living. My blog forced me to write consistently, I need that regularity.

2) What is the difference between writing for yourself and writing for others? I don’t really think there is a difference, for me at least. When I write I aim to please myself first. I write for myself, because if I’m not satisfied with my work I can’t expect anyone else to be.

3) What do you like most to write about? I like to write most about psychological, political and social issues. I originally set out to cover television, film, books, art and music on this blog, but I couldn’t ignore my inquisitive side.

4) If you think there is a downside to keeping a public blog, what is it? Huh. I guess the only downside, which is also a positive, is that anyone can read your blog.

5) Where would you travel if time and money were no object? I’d travel to Germany. There is so much history and culture in that small country. It’s one thing to study history and another to be immersed in it. Also, I love how German tastes. That came out wrong. I mean the language, I love speaking it.

6) What genre do you like most to read? I like reading texts that blur the genre lines, but I tend to read more literary works.

7) What genre do you like most to write? I think I like to write fantastic literature the most. Why can’t fantasy be just as real as literal, naturalistic texts?

8) Looking at your audience, are they your age peers? If no, what age demographic are they? I don’t know how old my audience is. Based on my green age of nineteen, I’d say that the majority of my audience is older than me.

9) What is your favorite part of the day? Going to sleep.

10) What was/is your favorite age? Why? (I liked being 12 because I was old enough to be free but not old enough to be responsible for myself). That’s a good question. My favourite age would have to be eighteen. I stopped caring about my age then.

I choose you:

http://curlupandread.wordpress.com/

http://2pat.com/2014/01/19/rainbow-over-niagara/

http://caughtbytheeyeofmankind.wordpress.com/

http://homethatwebuilt.wordpress.com/

http://nodustollens.wordpress.com/

http://misadventuresdaringescape.wordpress.com/

http://gradualthought.com/

http://missbookaholic.com/

http://theartisticnobody.wordpress.com

http://jessycoleman21.wordpress.com/

Now, here is some extra writing for you fantastic bloggers:

1) Do you believe everyone is entitled to their beliefs and opinions? Why or why not.

2) If every book in the world were to be burned tomorrow, what one book would you save?

3) Do you think popular books are popular because they are good or because they are marketable?

4) If you could spend one day with one dead author who would it be? Why?

5) Wat’s more important to you, page views or followers?

6) What irks you about other people’s writing?

7) Do you always watch a movie after you’ve read the book it’s based on?

8) Is a university or college degree really worth the trouble?

9) What’s your favourite place to write from?

10) If you knew the next book you read would be your last, what would you read?