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Thursday, September 17, 2009

Do we really write from experience?

What's the hardest thing you've ever written? Was it so hard to write because it came from experience?

As aspiring authors we all begin this journey of writing because we have a story, or more likely a scene, that is just burning inside us and we have to get it down on paper. So we sit, eagerly bouncing on the chair, behind the keyboard until the thing takes on a life of its own and is commited to paper - or in this day and age the hard disk!

Then what? Well then we have to flesh it out and turn it into a master piece which is sure to be snapped up by the first publisher who sees it! So, we're writing away, when ... WHAM! BANG! Oh dear, now we have to write something we're not entire comfortable with! What to do?

Go back to our own experience. That's what they tell you to do isn't it? Errmmm ... can you really see Roald Dahl burying himself alive to see what it feels like? And although at times I'm sure we've all felt like enacting the shower scene in Psycho - well it's not really legal is it?

And that's why we romance writers sometimes have these silly grins on our faces. Yup, you've guessed it! We get to close our eyes and crawl into that lovely place within our mind where no real person gets to intrude - and that's when we imagine what it would be like. That delicious hero you've written the last eighty pages about - what do his arms feel like when they wrap around you? What happens to your heart beat? What do you smell? What do you hear? What can you taste?

Whooops, sorry, just wiping the drool off my keyboard!

This is why we write though - because we get to experience it all through our characters and because it's as vital to us as breathing.

Happy breathing today!

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