I have been trying, since last friday, to figure out how to word this post; and like everything else in this writing career of mine, the world helped me along in a round about way.
I had trouble sleeping last night. Fell asleep on the couch (an unusual occurence for me), got woken up by my 2-year-old daughter at 4:30 am, and saw my s.o. off to work at 6:30 am.
I decided to stay up and catch the early morning edition of Criminal Minds; this particular one entitled Zoe’s Reprise. This particular show is about F.B.I. criminal profilers specializing in serial killers. The character Zoe is a young wanna-be profiler who goes to Agent Rossi’s book signing and later goes to a recent crime scene (someplace she really shouldn’t be) to try to gain some insight into what she believes to be the work of a serial killer, but all the crimes look unrelated, she meets the un.sub. and doesn’t survive; inciting the full team’s presence to investigate her theory.
After the un.sub. is caught, Rossi questions his ability to continue P.R. on his new book and wonders with contempt the fascination the public has with serial killers. As one of the other agents explains; it was another of his books that inspired her to join the F.B.I.
Two things about this caught my ear; first, the obvious:
P.F. does not end with serial killers. There are many: magic, vampires, shifters, mythology, etc. Really, anything that is different from ourselves. This creates a huge revenue and fan-base for authors who can make them believable; J. K. Rowling, Stephanie Meyer, Krestley Cole, and most notably: the new fad Suzanne Collins (The Hunger Games) to fill the gap after Harry Potter and before the last instalment of Twilight. (Lucky)
But I suppose the real question is; why is the public fascinated at all?
I wish I could answer… If I could, I’m certain I would be the one with the best seller, the movie, and (in J. K. Rowling’s case) the theme park. Alas, one can dream… Moving on.
Inspiration is a funny thing; some people call it “their muse” others call it “destiny”. Whatever the name, the result is the same; forward momentum of an idea . For one needs to develop an idea before it can be acted upon (even if it’s micro-moments between the two processes). But still, inspiration is key to any action.
The pitfall of a writer, as it is for the famous and fame, the strength is also the weakness; who you inspire. For instance: the profiler writes a book about serial killers, and this same book inspires one to copy the murders within and another to train to fight the murderers within its pages. With the good must come the bad. But perhaps the quote at the end of the episode is not lost in this regard:
In youth we learn; in age we understand.
Marie von Ebner-Eschenbach (from http://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/quotes/m/marievoneb135183.html)
I think that in many ways I must follow the advice of the wise Kristen Lamb in her blog, Voice- The Key to Literary Magic Part 1, in which she states: “Ah, but when it comes to finding and developing our writing voice, we need to ask the tough questions before we proceed:
Am I humble enough to admit I don’t know everything?
Can I check my ego long enough to learn from those who know more than I do?
Can I face rejection and criticism and keep going?
Can I be happy writing even if I never make money?
What kind of writer do I want to be?
What is most important to me?
How do I define success?
How hard am I willing to work?
What am I willing to sacrifice to live my dreams?”
And from her blog Don’t Eat the Butt #4- Real Writers Never Struggle; “For the rest of us, struggle is part of the process. Writers struggle because they are writing. Just because you are having a hard time, doesn’t therefore make you an aspiring writer.”
P.S.: Thank you Kristen for your honesty and for giving me the kick in the pants when I need it!
Thanks for reading… Any thoughts? I’m not scared of a bad review. Leave a comment; I adore feedback!
xoxo til next time! :*