I hear it all the time, "Only write about what you know." But I've always wondered how that counsel applies to authors writing fantasy novels. Well, I think that some of the best authors write a combination of things they know by sight or through experience and things they know in their heart - something they carry deep feelings about. When you write about something you feel a connection with, you will likely end up producing some of your best work yet. I don't think that, in order to write an incredibly successful trilogy, Tolkein had to know what it was like to go on a journey to drop an all-powerful ring into a volcanic mountain. What I do suspect he knew, however, is what it felt like to bond with something so corruptive and yet have a strong desire to be rid of that thing. It's a relatable story that feels rather familiar to most, if not all, readers.
By the way, "the Lord of the Rings" has been reported to have been read more than any other book next to the Bible.
Until I get to that point where I have sympathetic feelings rooted into my writing, I just don't care enough about my work to write anything with a better quality than plain old decent.
Then again, it's not even that. It's not exactly like I don't care, it's more like I really can't write well without feeling some moral in the story that I relate to.
So here's my advice to myself: don't write it if it doesn't have a heart - a good heart. Like people, you only want to get to know the story if it has a good heart, and you find that out by the way you feel.
Those are my realizations of the week.
Moving on to Word Count Wednesday (which may or may not actually include a word count).
What am I working on?
It's been pretty uneventful in my story notebook for the past few days. I still want to write the Kent Higgins short-story I mentioned a while ago, but I don't know how likely I am to write more than a couple sentences outlining the story.
How do I feel about the process?
I suppose I'm just stuck in one of those phases where trying to write anything feels like trudging through peanut butter.
Total word count: Nope.