Although I often blog about writing, today is the first time I will share a snippet of my original fiction on this site. Below are the opening paragraphs of Chapter One of the novel manuscript I have spent the past few months polishing. As you may have understood from last week's post, I am not completely satisfied with my writing. I have lost confidence. But I do want to share my writing with others. I will never attain my personal goals of publication and inspiring others if I fail to share what I have written with an audience.
History, Hobbies, and Hopes
Over the weekend, I joined my parents in attending a gun show. Normally I find these events to be a waste of my time. Most of the vendors display modern weapons with composite stocks, overly-priced shotguns, antiques from WWI and WWII, or handguns with slides and clips. But none of these guns interest me. I'm not into shooting sports (although I was an archery instructor for a summer camp), and hunting in my little neck of the woods is not good enough to justify spending more than $300-$450 on a shotgun.
Writers, when they are researching or building up character and plot details, can fall victim to too much information. Details can be key to creating a compelling and believable story, but at the same time, it's possible to have too much or too many.
I'm not a big fan of first person POV in storytelling, and many of my favorite stories feature an ensemble cast. This is because the characters I'm most drawn to are fence-sitters. They are not necessarily indecisive, but they do tend to play both sides of a conflict and keep multiple options open for themselves. I always hope they'll choose the protagonist's side in the end, but a good storyteller will keep you guessing throughout the tale.
What Won’t You Write?
I think all of us who write fiction will agree that most of us have things we will not write into stories. The obvious topics or scenes would be things we find to be boring or tedious to read, those things that make us skip ahead in books or put them down altogether. No one wants to find their own works boring, correct? Other omitted items may include those things we find fascinating but don't lend themselves to our preferred writing genres...
A Case of Too Many Details…
Today I was reading an article on the indictment of several coal mine supervisors for manipulating equipment and data meant to keep miners safe. Several of the miners who worked under them have developed black lung disease as a result of years of exposure to elevated levels of coal dust, levels that their equipment should have shown to be unsafe had the supervisors not told those miners to interfere with the equipment's ability to collect accurate data. So basically, the focus of the article was black lung disease and the regulations put in place by the US federal government to help protect miners from this disease as well as other mining hazards. However...