Okay, you caught me – I’m cheating, because there actually, really, truly is no writing style at all in the whole, entire universe beginning with X. If you find one, a legit, in-English one, I will personally make you Quing* of the World for ten minutes.
SO! An expository being something written to explain or describe, this is absolutely the perfect opportunity to take up the baton of a progressive blog hop I was tagged in; How I Write – because, let’s face it, I’m a freakin’ wordsmith genius
arrogant prick, and y’all want to know how the magic happens…
First things first; I must thank my lovely friend Kerry for passing me the baton for this post – she blogs over at New2Two, all about her gorgeous double-double-whammy of trying to parent two sets of twins. She’s also a great laugh on twitter and to chat to, though if you confuse her too far by being a Tigger and talking about poop (though with four little kids, you’d think she’d keep up with that) then she curls up and goes to sleep to regroup her thoughts, which is kinda cute.
Now then, lovelies – with my ‘ado’ all a’done, let me proceed with the Q&A:
1. What am I working on?
Unless you’re brand new here, or have been living under some kind of ‘hides the blinkin’ obvious’ rock, then you’ll know that I’m working on completing the A-Z in April blogging challenge, trying to make it through the alphabet of writing styles. As you see from today’s stretch – some attempts are better than others, but that’s the current state of affairs.
In other places, I am working on a book. Because the Anitra story, which took me so much by surprise, and is so wonderful to write, needs telling. Well, it doesn’t need telling – the world won’t stop existing if I never write another word of it – but it’s in me to write, and I love it and want to share more of it, so there’s that.
Then there’s the poetry, and the Well Tempered Bards, which I confess has been somewhat neglected this month, due to both Bards being under the kosh with the A-Z challenge. Normal (and hopefully, better) service will be resumed. But meanwhile I’ve been branching out, poetically speaking, and really found my mojo working well of late. I’ve written for other people; sudden, unexpected pieces which jumped out of whatever reality we were in at that moment in time, and I’ve taken on a game with my friend Laura, where we feed one another words and create incredible, tiny pieces, like bite-sized gateaux.
There’s a children’s book, which been shelved since I wrote it, but has potential (perhaps – still awaiting feedback from my beta) and which I might have a crack at self-publishing. If I can get my mind around the shenanigans necessary to navigate taxes/income/whatever other red-tape-handties the government can connive, to get in on a slice of tiny, air-pie, and extract their entitlement from. If I can’t get my head around it, well it goes back into an electronic box on the shelf, to be dusted off another day.
A potential project with a group of truly wonderful, inspiring writer/wonder/warrior women is in the works, and currently at the hashing-out stage (by which I mean we mention what we want to do, then wander off on delightful tangents of bitching about Facebook algorithms, how to take the best ‘boob selfies’, and whether or not any of us have the skills we need to participate in this kind of audacity (we do – we all do, we’re just all as precariously insecure as each other, and it seems to diverge into a big circle of other-praise and self-wavering, in which I think (and hope) we are all gradually being encouraged to see our value and ability to contribute).
The project is a highly specific one – it’s hush-hush for now (and I’m writing this, fully expecting backlash for lifting any kind of lid, but to be honest I’m excited about it, and I know that I’m FAR more likely to keep going with it, having exposed myself to potential ridicule for not following through on something I’ve dangled, temptingly, in front of you) – and it’s the kind of thing which, to the world might only be one small effort, but to one person, that effort might mean the world, and on that basis, is thoroughly worthwhile doing.
And this blog. Hmm. At the moment I’m growing increasingly frustrated with Blogger, having championed it for so long (mostly because it’s simple, like me, and doesn’t require a great deal of technical know-how) – in spite of its useability, which I love, and can handle, the truth is that it’s not as well-organised to support writers, whereas WordPress definitely is. I see a change in my future, and already I feel like rather than decamping to a foreign land, I’ll be coming home to a place I’ll be welcomed and included in the community, rather than the outlier who happened to bunk in from a donked-up world beyond the borders.
As for writing; I’ll always write. If I have breath in my body and the ability to create letters, I will write.
2. How does my writing differ from others of its genre?
Genuinely, that’s all I’ve got for this answer. There are other fiction writers out there, who do a damn good job, and isn’t fiction subjective anyway? There are other poets, many more mindblowing than I. There are other people who write frankly and with bald honesty about the messed-up shit of their lives, like miscarriage and infertility and depression and living with depressed people and child abuse and All The Crap. I salute them and am pleased to count myself amongst the number who write to break the taboos and offer solace to those who find themselves stuck in the middle of any of those situations or after-effects of same. There are other narcissistic, write-about-themselves-because-it’s-great-escape-and-also-they-just-gotta-write blogs out there, and I am but a drop in the ocean of that writing.
But there’s only one of me.
I bring my own spin, my own words, my own brain, and pour it out; distilling my thoughts in pixels and allowing you to swirl them in the bowl-glass of your mind, to breathe their bouquet and see whether you might find them delicious; whether you might take a sip and find yourself intoxicated…
3. Why do I write what I do?
Well now, that depends, doesn’t it, on which part of what I write you’re referring to. I have different reasons for all of them. Initially I began the blog (is that what you mean?) because I wanted to develop my ‘writing for an audience’ skills, and very rapidly found the feedback/validation/community aspect absolutely addictive, and now a lot of the time I write (here) to perpetuate that because I enjoy it so much.
For other things, though, I have other reasons.
- Poetry – always loved writing it, and have been for probably 20 years or so, in one way or another. Through books, it was part of my childhood, and it has settled in my soul until there are times and ways that the only way I can express something is through a poem. It reaches the parts other writing misses. Or something.
- Clowning/Everyday crap – perpetuation, relationship, feedback, and just injecting some silliness and joy into everyday life. I don’t live an interesting life, but I have an interesting mind, and I love sharing it and seeing what you make of it – writing my thoughts (hey, I called the place ‘Considerings’, for crying out loud – supposing from the offset that my inner workings held sufficient fascination to draw a crowd *checks clothes for ‘arrogant prick’ label – finds it*)
- Miscarriage/infertility/depression – I found solace and comfort in being able to read about how other people had experienced these, and how they’d coped, and that they HAD come through the other side. And precisely how these things had happened. I took, and now I give back, freely and frankly, because I think Truth is important and enabling, and because I want to fight back against the taboos which go with all of these things. They’re real and need kicking to pieces, and these things dragged out into the light so that people aren’t so afraid of talking about them, because doing any of these and feeling alone is horrendous. Doing more than one of them and feeling alone is living hell. If I can just stretch out my hand, through words, and offer it to someone who’s drowning in these, I will.
- Fiction – because I love it, because it’s fun to write, and because I want to Make You Feel – I want you melting with joy, sparkling with wonder or sizzling with anger. I want you spellbound, lost in my words, in an IMAX 3D, surround-sound, HD story. I want you chilled to your core, with shivers down your spine and goosebumps creeping across your skin. I want you hot, buzzing and ready to ignite. I want your stomach to clench, your heart to fall and your jaw to drop open. I want your pulse to quicken, or to know that you gasped out loud. I want you to laugh. I want you ready to crawl through the computer screen and strangle me. I want you absolutely, utterly transfixed in moments of shimmering beauty so perfect you forget where you are, and that your real life exists. I want you on the edge of your seat. I want your mind’s eye and your emotions for my playthings, and I want to leave you, always, wanting more…
4. How does my writing process work?
Ohmigosh, I don’t know! I get caught on an idea or a thought or a song, or the sound of someone’s voice, or part of their story, or something I’ve overheard, and it’s like seeing a star being born – a tiny spark which grows outwards until it engulfs me and I have to write it before it burns out.
Or I write, thinking about how you’ll respond, what you’ll feel or think or learn. I write wondering whether this will be the day I can introduce you to an entirely new thought – to forge new pathways in your neurones as your brain works in ways it never has before – sees combinations of words and concepts which were hitherto unknown.
Or I write to purge; to vomit out the toxins from my brain, take them from swirling through my soul, shredding it like flying razors, and place them on a page, where I can see and acknowledge them, and stare them down, so that they don’t hurt so much.
Or I just write. I have my nook in the corner of the sofa. I have music (most of the time, and when I turn that off, you know things got bad), and I have my laptop. I have notebooks I forget to write in, a phone I neglect to use to store information, and I have a brain full of trivia, care for, and wonder at the world. And I have numerous cups of tea.
There you have it. I hope it was good for you to know. It was great for me to write (and I could’ve written more).
Meantime, passing the baton, I’m tagging (it’s a blog hop, remember?):
My sweet, wonderful Dragon-friend, Joy, of Comfytown Chronicles, who makes me laugh with her utterly bonkers silliness, and then sideswipes from left-field with something really beautiful and poignant, and who truly has no idea how good her writing is.
My Precious – Samara, of Samara Speaks, who writes the way I’d like to when my writing grows up – she has LIVED, and her stories are the ‘full-body-immersion, with Feels and fries on the side’ pieces that I want to one day be capable of producing.
Ladies, TAG! You’re ‘it’…
*Apparently my psychic abilities are all out of whack – if anyone bothers to try for this, I have no idea whether they’ll be a chap or a chapess, so I needed a one-size-fits-all, monarch-ish title. I figure this’ll do. I’ll even throw in a crown.