Ever since my son could hold a pencil, he has been drawing and now at age thirteen, I continue to watch him. He has managed to draw some difficult things over the years, including Transformers and his latest faze is the people from Halo, but what is remarkable is that he can do it all in pen. He can come up with ideas for his own drawings, or happily copy the work of others, sometimes spending hours on them. With our encouragement (which makes all the difference), my son continues to do what he enjoys doing, drawing whatever pleases him. I’ve come to the belief that it should be the same when it comes to my own writing.
As writers aiming for publication, we can sometimes get caught up with the latest fads in what is being published. After the publication of the Harry Potter series, there was an increase in fantasy novels; the Twilight series saw an increase in paranormal books for young adults. Jumping on a fad is no guarantee of publication as it takes years before seeing the final product. I remember reading a book which stated that you shouldn’t write what you want to write, write what a publisher wants to publish. While I understand the logic behind this (and this may work best for non-fiction writers), I think fiction writers need to express their creativity in exploring what works for them. Restricting this creativity can make the writing feel forced, therefore becoming a chore, stalling the creativity and leaving the writer to no longer enjoy what they are doing. I think this quote sums it up best:-
“In truth, I never consider the audience for whom I’m writing. I just write what I want to write.” — J.K. Rowling
If this can work for one of the richest women in the world, then what’s to stop the rest of us poor inspiring writers? She had an idea for a story that she believed in and she went with it. Despite all the rejections she received, she finally found a publisher that loved her idea. Isn’t this what being a creative writer is all about?
So I will take a lesson from my son (shh, don’t tell him) and embrace my inner child. I’m remembering what it was like to be that ten year old girl who enjoyed making up stories and got such a kick out of it that she wanted to make a living from it. Now is the right time to enjoy writing what you like, when you like, without feeling the pressure from publishers.
Are you embracing your inner child?
8 thoughts on “Creativity: Embrace Your Inner Child.”
This is such a good reminder — write what we want to write, what is in us to write. We are the only ones who can tell the stories that are uniquely given to us to write. I will continue to embrace my inner child and do my writing because it brings me joy. Thank you!
Hear Hear Debbie. As Sue Whiting relayed to us at this year’s CYA Conference, above all, Write from your Heart! Be true to yourself. Your words will stand taller and stronger for it.
Hi Dimity. I agree that we have to write from our hearts and be true to ourselves. Some years ago, I was naive enough to try my hand at writing a pure romantic novel, like Mills & Boon (how hard could it be, right?). These may seem formulaic, but I found it terribly difficult to write, simply because my heart (pardon the pun) wasn’t in it. I knew then that writing a pure romantic novel wasn’t for me. I’ve finally found what works best for me, but it took years of trial and error. Thanks for your thoughts.
Hi Elizabeth Anne, I’m glad you enjoyed my post. I’ve been a bit stalled in my writing lately, but it got me thinking that I’m lucky right now that I actually have the time to write what I want. I have written a novel that falls into the trend of YA paranormal and although it may not see the light of day now, it may do so some years down the track. This, along with others, has given me the chance to experiment with my writing. As you say, we are the only ones that can write stories unique to us. Thanks for your thoughts.
Thank you! This post is a reminder that I’m completely in the right here. I’m a fantasy author, because I *want* to be a fantasy author, because I love the fantasy genre. And I’m hoping that my love will shine through to the readers and make the books I write that much more special.
Hi Kaitlin. I’ve tried writing in various styles and genres, only to discover I find that I’m wasting my time – they were never really ‘me’. I have found my ‘voice’ in YA fiction, possibly even MG. You have to write what makes you happy by writing what you love. I’m glad you found it fantasy. Thanks for commenting. 🙂
Couldn’t agree more and I’m always embracing my inner child. Happy Writing Debbie!
Good for you Catherine! Happy writing to you too. 🙂
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