We all have to start somewhere so I’m going to start here. I think the term “aspiring to be a writer” is an interesting one. Anyone who frequents the internet inevitably is a writer to some extent. Although we’ve evolved from purely text-only communication on the web, to the proliferation of podcasts, videos, interactive doohickies and whatnots, the core of the web’s content is text. Again we’ve moved on from the 80s and BBS’s and IRC to the 90s, where everyone had a homepage on Geocities with pictures of their cats and NNTP services, to forums (fora?) to the explosion of blogging and then finally to social media and beyond. All of these are still about and widely used and hopefully will continue to be. The point I’m making though is that everyone, be it the receptionist at some company having a whinge about Deirdre from accounts on her Facebook page to microblogged Tumblr accounts about photography, to 140 character stories on Twitter, to blogs about fishing, whatever, everyone is at it so “aspiring to be a writer” has become too vague. One can be a writer in about four minutes. I just did it, on WordPress, look I’m writing. Someone might even read it.
That’s the difference I guess, what I’m aspiring to be is a writer with an audience. So how does one get an audience? Well, I can only assume as a lifelong reader, that to get me to read what you wrote, it has to be interesting. OK, so to be interesting I’m going to need some insight. I’m not knowledgeable on any particular subject as such. I know a lot about music and drumming in particular, but not enough to be seen as more desirable to read than thousands of other people who are already well established and indeed more knowledgeable than me. I know a lot about loads of different things, but I’d never consider myself a subject expert on anything really. What I do enjoy though is reading fiction. All sorts of fiction but especially science fiction, fantasy, and children’s books based on the same. Now, there’s always call for new stories and I have a head full of bizarre so why not try and pen some of it? I don’t think I can produce a worse insult to literature than Dan Brown for example, and he’s loaded!
So, I want to write fiction that people will read. There’s a short, succinct statement of what I want to do. Nothing glamorous, I don’t want to be snapped up J. K. Rowling style and have money and fame thrust at me, that would be far to narcissistic to even consider. I’d like a couple of people to enjoy some of the ideas that are in my head though, because I have lots, and they’re what I’ve used over the past few years to retreat to in times of stress or pressure and relax, and they’d be nice to share. I imagine they won’t be to many people’s taste but then fiction is such fickle and personal thing that if one can’t accept that fact, they’re destined to madness.
I know very little of writing fiction. I’ve read loads! I know what I like and what I don’t. I’ve not done any courses, I stopped English at GCSE and I have no intend to do any more of either. I’ll make use of the resources that are available to me for free, the internet, friends, etc. and work it out for myself. I’m also going to document it here, not necessarily the actual fruits of my labours, but certainly the lessons I’ve learnt along the way. More as a log of it than anything else, but it’s always nice to share isn’t it? My biggest problem in life is that I’m no completer-finisher. In fact, I struggle to finish anything. I’m hoping to use this as a tool to push myself to get some of this finished instead of procrastinating and being distracted by shiny things.
Wish me luck!