Happy Monday you wonderful readers!
Today is the 30 June, which is the 181st day of the year in the Gregorian calendar. There are 184 days remaining until the end of the year. It’s also Meteor Watch Day. Go figure 🙂
It’s a free week this week and one would think I’d have thousands of things to talk about …. but I’m afraid I don’t. I had the idea of talking about the soccer, because it really occupies my interest at the moment. It’s weird to admit that even after all those years in Australia, I still barrack for the German team. AND they’re doing very well. Yes, I do have a soft spot for Australia as well, but unfortunately, they’re no longer in the tournament. I have even found a soft spot for the US team, but simply because their coach used to be one of my favourite players in the 1990s. All that aside though, it’s been quite an interesting World Cup this year, with the big names like England, Spain and Portugal out already. I have to say, I despise the time difference at the moment, but enjoy the few highlights I get to see on television.
The other thing I wanted to get off my chest, was talking about my latest health dilemma, but decided against it. I do not want to bore you! 🙂
My little girl was busy this weekend with a going to the footy down in Melbourne on Friday night and having visitors on Saturday. She’s tired and exhausted, and nicely told me I need to think of something by myself this week. Fair’nuff.
PS – Yes, “her” team won!
So I’m sitting here in front of the heater, the wind outside carrying the arctic cold over here and the temperatures are dropping to single digit degrees. Winter’s here! However, I still can’t think of anything to write.
I hope you all have read my latest books New Beginnings and More Beginnings, because the third and final book in the series Fresh Beginnings, will be out soon. I really need a bit of a boost in sales 🙂
Anyway, with nothing to write, I thought I’d pinch a blog post I wrote a few years back for my publisher Astraea Press. It’s still valid. Enjoy!
Writer or Storyteller?
“To be or not to be “ ….. Now I’m not here to tell you that there’s a difference. Quite honestly, I wouldn’t dare. I’m not Wikipedia. But in my humble opinion, yes there is one. See, when people come up to me and ask whether I’m an writer I’m always tempted to tell them I’m a storyteller.
I’m not a writer. For the life of it, I cannot sit down and just write, may it be a story, blog or even a letter. I need the “right moment”, most of the time it’s the “right music” that makes me wonder off into a daydream – and bingo! I’ve thought about how the next scene for my storycould be. I don’t plot, I don’t develop characters, I just write down my words.
So, I’ve got the music, I’ve got my laptop and jot it down. Easy and straight forward. After a few months I’ve got a really nice story and I ask friends (even hubby!) for their opinion – luckily they’ve always liked it so far. Now comes the part writers do from the very beginning: my story now needs to be polished with “show not tell”, with the right POV and to bring a “flow” into the sentences. Then you send it off to a pro Editor for more polishing.
Now for me a writer has learnt these talents (or they even come naturally to them) – They can show the character’s heart is aching in a way that the reader is searching for their tissues to wipe a tear. They describe the scene so subtly you don’t notice the words, but you have the picture right in front of you. They have the hang of the POVs. They know where they want the story to go to and they know how to get there. Read a good book, not necessarily a bestseller, and concentrate on just those points and you see what I mean.
Writing a book is a craft and should honestly not be underestimated. I know I did So if you think you have a great story all your friends and critique partners loved, do yourself a favour and have it polished into that diamond
that it deserves to be!
Have a wonderful week everyone!
Mostly Iris, just wanted to say whatever your health problem is, not feeling 100% sucks. So many people keep on keeping on, while sometimes small, sometimes big things ‘health wise’ can be troubling them in the background. It’s easy to say that “there’s always someone worse off than you” and people try not to moan about health issues, but how you are feeling about yourself and the world, is always valid, in my book. (I hope that all made sense)
Good luck with the ‘new’ Beginnings book.
((hugs)) Lily! I really appreciate you kind words.
I am the kind of person who says there’s someone worse off than me … my health sucks; I’ve got good days and bad days, it’s all about keeping a balance of diet and healthy lifestyle 🙂 But there are people out there who have only bad days.
Yes, REALLY looking forward to the release of Fresh Beginnings. My main character does the same trip through the US as we did last year!
Iris, I think promotion is the main reason we schedule ‘open
weeks each month;I’m having a guest, since nothings on tap for me right now…not even an article.I have been busy, and procrastinating! But good luck to you, and I hope you feel better.
Pray tell, what is a ‘footie’…a football party?
You always add to my linguistic knowledge…I love it!
Tonette, I agree, the free week is a great opportunity for book promo, but I wouldn’t like to bore everyone with the constant posts of my books!
Footie = Football Game 😉 It must be very Australian.
I’ve written a book (still looking for a publisher) about a football player here in Australia and had long conversations with a friend whether or not to leave in these typical Aussie lingo words.
I believe that most Americans find Australian lingo interesting…and often amusing! I think it would definitely add to the story.The trick is to find subtle ways to make sure your entire readership understands what you are talking about …say someone’s going for or throwing a “Footie”, the describe what the kids will be doing while the adults watch or go to the game, or what will be served, etc. We all know what someone means to throw a shrimp or prawn on the barbie, but if we didn’t, you could say something about checking the grill and someone could comment on the size of the shrimp. If there is a newcomer in their midst, he.she can ask questions or you could show them confused.If it’s a serious piece,or a newcomer would distract from the story,I’d leave out the latter,(although that would make a good story or subplot…newcomer gets confused in Australia, but I don’t need to tell you!). Someone who has been there a while could possibly say they were confused about something when they first got there, if need be, but again,I’d use that sparingly.
Think of this:people read sci-fi and fantasy every day and pick up on many differences without having them all spelled out. I am sure that your writing skills are up to insinuating a little subtle information to make some things clearer to Americans and others, and for a few lines that are commonly spoken in Australia, leave them in! So what if it’s a phrase that some don’t know? If it would be out-of-character for the person NOT to say something ‘typically Australian’, don’t blow that person’s character or the truth of the moment. It adds to the character of the entire piece.
I remember a friend with a discussion about phrases in Agatha Christie’s works.”Mare’s nest” was one that particularly threw her off,but it never stopped her from enjoying them all.
And, as I said, most Americans find Australians charming or quirky, but likeable. My vote?Leave the phrases in.
Very interesting study of “writer” vs “storyteller”.
Of course, IMHO, it’s best to be both. But there is a difference. My late father-in-law was a terrific story teller but couldn’t (or wouldn’t) write anything to save his life.
And I’ve seen many writers who possess all the technical tools of writing, but don’t (or can’t) produce an interesting story.
But I tend to use the term ‘writer’ — when describing myself — because that’s what I’ve wanted / needed to do for over five decades. That desire to communicate with the written word has nearly always burned brightly within me. Have I always been terrific at it? No. Most of us write things which need lots of work before it can be considered a great story.
And I could spend paragraphs talking about POETRY, which — in many instances — does not so much “tell” a story, as It invokes a reaction in the reader.
Agree with all of the above … yes, the perfect situation would be to be both. I’m more a storyteller. Writing doesn’t come easy to me … and I’m really getting a bit peeved off with the publishing business that the emphasis is nowadays on how perfect a ms has been submitted and less the actual story with all it possible flaws!
Being able to write Poetry would be a great asset. I would love to here your thoughts about poetry one day! We should add it to our list!
I have been writing (mentally) essays about poetry for about 4 decades. None committed to paper, yet, unfortunately.
But it would be a great topic.
I didn’t much follow the soccer tournament, except I did catch who won, or lost. But I did express empathy for the US team when they lost. I’m sorry to hear you’re under the weather. I hope you’re better soon! You mentioned how cold it is there, which could have something to do with your health? Not asking, just sayin’. 🙂 It’s been really hot here in the PNW of the USA. It’s rare and I Like it! The weather guy says it’s supposed to start cooling down, back to rain, no doubt. 😦
AFA your subject – I’d have to say I began this as a story-teller, which I still consider myself to be, but I’ve learned to be a writer along the way. I don’t know why there’s a difference, but I’m told there is. 0?
As for the soccer … I wish I could say, I’m glued to the telly, but with the time difference, I can’t 😦 … But Germany is still going strong
As for the weather/ being cold …. actually no, it is cold. I’m healthier than I have been in years, and often feeling warmer than others. it’s cold.
I agree with you …. it’s like a transformation into a writer … but I still consider myself a story teller 🙂