Monday, July 18, 2011
Kiss A Crappy Writer
The real reason for me had nothing to do with the authors I loved. In fact, for a long time those were the very ones who held me back. If I couldn't build a world like J.K. Rowling then why bother? Or make you believe the monsters under your bed were waiting to eat you with sharp, dripping teeth like Stephen King, then what was the point?
In other words, if I couldn't be great then I wouldn't be at all. This is the grown up version of if I can't be the leader then I'm not playing. It's just an excuse and not even a very good one. Because most writers aren't great in the beginning and without the work...you won't ever be.
No, it wasn't great writing that inspired me. It was the crappy kind, the really bad writing. Those stories that slipped through the cracks of this industry and somehow made it to the shelves without plot or weak cardboard characters. None will be named here and honestly I couldn't remember specific ones anyway. But after finishing one of them the thought crossed my mind...I could do better. Not in a condescending, superior sort of way but in a light bulb flash of truth. I could do better. And if I could do better than this, then someday I could be great.
When I read a book whose writing doesn't draw me in and whose characters make me want to kill them by chapter two, I don't get angry. Because this book might have inspired one of the authors I love to write better. It makes me want to kiss those crappy writers for their effort and after all, we hear over and over how subjective this business is.
Those crappy writers might be your favorites.