I don't know why I did it, but today I purchased William Zinsser's On Writing Well from a gift shop bookstore. It was a little pricey, but the impulse, arising from boredom, put me in a curious mood. The front cover of this book clearly warns it is a "Classic Guide to Writing Nonfiction."
Did you see that? The color of the operative word is red.
I've been trying to produce a fictional novel for the past several years. I've written fourteen chapters in my third attempt. Why would I gravitate toward such an extreme as nonfiction? I had to ask myself this because my appetite for fiction seems to have taken a dive. I leave my manuscript at various stages and in multiple locations: Dropbox folder, flash drive, external hard drive, etc. Sometimes I wonder when I'll actually hunker down and go looking for the most current version. Sad?!
So now I ask myself. What "nonfiction" subject would appeal to me? I've pampered my blog for 5 years now and I've never once treated it like I do my manuscripts. I haven't ignored it for months at a time. I check the health of my blog with Google Analytics to ensure she's getting the proper attention. I post articles with keywords resulting in promised and predictable results. So why don't I allot the same attention to my manuscript?
After I read the first 3 chapters of Zinsser's book, a revelation struck me. I'm not a storyteller. I don't have a story I can jot down in a set number of words to make a novel. I'm a writer who wants to tell you about what I know and believe. That's why I return here so much. I'm not wired to tell stories. I'm wired to give an opinion about things I care about, namely writing and the crap that happens to me.
This is sort of about writing, but it's more about crap that happens to me. It's about the purchase of a writing book which may have changed my writer path. Whether that's for the better or not, we shall see.
Maybe I should look into memoir writing...
1. The Magic Closet - the story of my son who has A.D.D. and the number of times I found naked girls in his bedroom closet.
2. Hi, I Don't Belong Here - my week long stay in the hospital because I lost it, really lost it.
3. I'm Glad I Wasn't Aborted, Too - a candid discussion with my mother who revealed the fact she couldn't afford to abort me and the relief she felt afterward.
Trust me, all three are nonfiction titles! Please vote and let me know which story I should tell. I appreciate your input. You all have been with me through the years. You SHOULD be the ones I listen to when making these major decisions with my writing journey. I trust you. Write your votes in the comments below.
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