Wednesday, October 2, 2019

October #TheIWSG and Reading


Founded by Alex J. Cavnaugh

Optional Question: It's been said that the benefits of becoming a writer who does not read is that all your ideas are new and original. Everything you do is an extension of yourself, instead of a mixture of you and another author. On the other hand, how can you expect other people to want your writing, if you don't enjoy reading? What are your thoughts?

First, I must say I'm biased. I love to read. If I could get paid for reading books all day, I would take that job! 
Second, I think what we watch in movies, shows, and even on the world news pours into our brains and becomes a part of our imaginary landscape, so I'm not sure if any of us is truly a clean slate of originality. I know my first fantasy trilogy was influenced by Star Wars (not intentionally, but it was definitely there and once I realized it, I started to pick and choose how much it influenced those books). I have had a strong desire to write strong female characters ever since Princess Leia stepped onto the screen with a blaster in her hand.

Normally, in this next bit, I would update you on my writing life. Um. I finished a short story that I'm proud of and I submitted it to an anthology just a few hours before the submission window closed. I felt pretty triumphant about it, even though I don't know if the story will be accepted or published.
There's more than's gone on in my writing life, but that's my highlight and I'm going to stick with that.

Otherwise, I've been sick for the last 36 hours with a horrible, terrible, wouldn't-wish-it-on-anyone, kind of stomach bug or food poisoning problem. I'm slightly better today, so I decided to post ... late.

Anyway, I hope all of you are well and happy, and healthy!

Write On!!!

This month’s Write…Edit…Publish challenge:

As you sow so shall you reap. What will your character sow - dragon's teeth, elven bones, gouged eyes from tormented souls? Most of our members go with horror or speculative for October. But that's not written in stone ... or blood.

January’s IWSG post day will be on January 8, the second Wednesday. The first Wednesday is New Year’s Day – do not post that day! Note it in your calendars now – January 8.
The next #IWSGPit - our Twitter pitch event – is January 15, the third Wednesday. This will be our fifth one and last year there were thousands of agents and publishers watching, ten thousand Tweets sent out, and #IWSGPit became a trending topic. Polish your pitches and check the site for full details.



32 comments:

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Sorry you've been sick.
If we were a clean slate we'd also be a blank slate. Hard to write about nothing.

Patricia Josephine aka Patricia Lynne said...

I think you're right about influences. We consume so much media besides books, that there's no way something isn't influencing our writing.

Madeline Mora-Summonte said...

Fingers crossed for that story! And I hope you feel better as the day goes on....

David Powers King said...

Do feel better soon! One way or another, something is going to influence our writing. How we use that information makes all the difference. :)

Tyrean Martinson said...

Alex - true!

Patricia - Yes, we do.

Madeline - thank you!

David - yes, how we use it makes a big difference. And thanks!

Rachna Chhabria said...

Not just books, but everything around us influences our writing and subconsciously creeps into it.
Get well soon, Tyrean.

Kristi said...

I've met some who claim that their writing is totally original, that they'd be mortified if they thought they were borrowing from life or media... I personally think they're delusional. I've even hit on an idea for a plot point after hearing a song that really moved me. There's no way to shelter yourself (and why would you want to?)

Hopefully you feel better soon!

Ronel Janse van Vuuren said...

I hope you feel better soon! Happy IWSG day :-)

Ronel visiting and on co-hosting IWSG day Co-hosting, Flagship Content and Interesting Developments

Julie Flanders said...

Wouldn't that be amazing to get paid to read all day? If only!!
Good luck with your submission and congrats on getting it in. Hope you are feeling much better soon.

M.J. Fifield said...

Best of luck with your submission. Getting that story in is in itself a huge achievement!

Hope you're feeling better soon!

Tyrean Martinson said...

Rachna- yes, that's true. Thanks, Rachna!

Kristi - yes, we can get ideas from anywhere, and why limit our imaginations?

Ronel - Thanks!

Julie - Thank you!

MJ - Thanks!!

Jemi Fraser said...

Hope you feel better soon - sounds nasty!
I'm with you on Leia and wanting that job reading full time! :)

Natalie Aguirre said...

So sorry you've been sick. Hope you feel better soon.

I'd love a job reading all day. That would be a dream job.

L. Diane Wolfe said...

I read a ton of Anne McCaffrey as a teen and her way of focusing on characters despite the sci-fi setting certainly sneaked into my writing.

krystal jane said...

Hope the bug is gone soon!

I feel the same as you about reading. And that there is no way to be “original.” Even Star Wars was inspired by something. Creativity breeds creativity. You can be creative if you don’t have any fuel in the first place.

emaginette said...

I love what you said about you deciding how much you'd let Star Wars influence you and your work. That's the key when absorbing any story. It moves us. Changes us. That's the draw. But what we choose to put in our work, is up to us and being aware of our actions makes the work ours.

You're wise.

Anna from elements of emaginette

Chemist Ken said...

Hey, at least you published on time, even while under the weather. I'm perfectly healthy and didn't remember about ISWG until after noon my time.

Sarah Foster said...

Hope you feel better soon!
There's just no way to not be influenced by *something.* My current WIP was inspired by watching something really stupid on TV. You never know what ideas will pop into your head!

Pat Garcia said...

Hi,

I feel the same way. If someone offered me a job reading, I would jump to it
Happy to hear that you made the deadline for your short story. I know the feeling about just being happy you submitted it. I feel that way too. Just crossing that line and letting my word go out for others to judge is a success story for me.

Wishing you the very best with your story. I truly hope you place among the winners.

Shalom aleichem,
Pat G @ EverythingMustChange

CWMartin said...

Feel better!

Cathrina Constantine said...

Ack!!! Stomach bugs are, or can be the worst. I hope you're on the mend. I'm glad you spent those few minutes to submit your story before the deadline. Good Luck!

Steven Arellano Rose Jr. said...

Star Wars was one of the big motivators for my writing as well. Those stomach flus are nasty, I know. I can't write when I have them really bad. I hope you getbetter soon. Congratulations on your submission and I hope it will be accepted.

Lynda R Young said...

Yikes, I hope you continue to feel better.
And yes, you should feel triumphant about getting that story submitted. We need to celebrate all our victories.

Brigitte Kirady said...

Hope you feel better soon! I absolutely agree with you about movies, shows, music, and news feeding into our imaginations and influencing our writing. Avoiding reading just to be 'original' seems a bit moot. Great post!

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Hi Tyrean - hope you're feeling better now ... nasty! I can learn so much from everyone's ideas ... and I struggle to read - yet look at lots of things ... just books seem to slip through my fingers ... without being read - just the anxiety that I never got round to them. One day - I'll get myself in gear - cheers and good luck with the writing - Hilary

The Cynical Sailor said...

I think lots of writers have been influenced by Star Wars. Best of luck with your submission and I hope you feel better soon.

Nick Wilford said...

Get well soon! And good luck with the submission - fingers crossed. I think submitting anything is an achievement in itself.

Elizabeth Seckman said...

Stomach bugs are the worst! I hope you feel better.

Good luck on your submission.

Helen said...

Yes, I agree that the things around us and what we've read influence us. Starting with "A Wrinkle in Time" to Andrea Norton to Anne McCaffery I can string a line of authors I liked and hope I can match some day for originality and character development.

cleemckenzie said...

I hate being sick. It takes so much valuable time to get well again.

Congrats on finishing the story for submission. Fingers crossed for you.

Fundy Blue said...

I hope you are feeling better, Tyrean! I was flying on IWSG Day, so I'm still making the rounds. Congrats on submitting that short story ~ You should be proud! I just managed to submit my entry for the IWSG anthology contest hours before the deadline; and win a spot in the book or not, I am proud! Good luck with your story!

Susan Gourley/Kelley said...

You make a good point about with the bombardment of life we all get that no ideas are actually original. Hope you feel better soon and get good news on your story.