You’re writing a book, too?March 30, 2009 at 3:05 PM | Posted in Uncategorized | 11 Comments
A few weeks ago, I found out that a girl who I’ve been friends with for a while was, in fact, writing a novel of her own. (If you’re reading this, hi Allison! Don’t worry, I won’t tease you. Too much.) I got jump-up-and-down excited because, well, I knew absolutely nobody – outside of the amazingamazing internetz, of course – who was actually writing a book like me. Our conversation went along of the lines of:
Me: OMIGOD! SRSLY?!
Her: Yeah *nervous laugh*
Me: What’s it about?!?!
Her: *refuses to say*
Me: *tries and fails to get her to spill info for the rest of class*
Okay, so that didn’t work too well. But today, I finally got Allison to tell me what her story, a historical romance with some fantasy, was about. She admitted that she only has a premise, and she’s only a few chapters in – but she has a few books she’s finished in the past. And THEN, get this, a guy in our English class put forth that he was writing a book, too! (We didn’t believe him at first, but apparently it’s true.) He also said he’s not very far into it, but his premise is awesome: the story of a faithless Muslim teen who comes to America after his parents have died, only to find social rejection, and then… well, I won’t give it away.
This is pretty mind-blowing. I mean, to be blunt, a lot of teens think writing a book would be cool (at least when they don’t think about all the grammar and general dorkiness that actually goes into it). When prodded, they’ll admit that they want to write a novel. A lot of us think being a famous author would be awesome – you could even say it’s right up there with artist or video game designer. But most would-be authors have never gotten past the “what does my main character look like,” first chapter stage, if they’ve written anything at all. Why is it like that? Because, and it’s been said a million times, writing is hard. Once you really sit down and start thinking about plot and the pages and pages you’re going to have to write, the cool thing becomes a huge monster. And that’s the dividing line, the reason why truly devoted teen writers are so rare.
Which is why I commend Allison and the guy in my English class. I don’t know how far they’re going to get, but I’m really glad to know that are there are people in MY high school class who know what’s it like to sit down and really think about the plot and your characters. To really write. In some cases, it’s a resource. I had a great convo with Allison at one point where she helped me iron out some plot holes – whereas a lot of my other friends don’t know what to say besides “that’s cool.”
Of course, having a RL book-writing friend isn’t always a positive experience. You might find that someone has a dream to publish, but either their writing isn’t quite up to snuff or they’re mislead when it comes to expectations, and you’re not sure how to turn them in the right direction. I know one Twiftie had a pretty sucky time when she offered to edit her friend’s writing and that friend didn’t take her suggestions too kindly.
My question for you is… do you have any real-life novel-writing friends or acquaintances? How have you interacted with them, if you have at all?