You are a scientist: examining life through telescope and microscope, observing both the great expanse and the most minuscule but essential detail.
You are a composer and musician: listening to the rhythm, pacing the beat, moving your characters dancing across the page.
You are a magician: fashioning people and places from the lofty atmosphere of imagination.
You are a parent: protective of your characters and mindful of their actions.
You are an architect and builder: mortaring words and stacking paragraphs, mindful of delicate balance and pleasing form.
You are the Dreamweaver, the Educator, the Wanderer in unknown lands, the Obsessive always searching for the suitable word and flawless phrase.
You are the Faithful One who cherishes the written word in an era of images and sound.
I actually encourage all writers to cultivate a sense of boredom.
That way you’ll know when your writing is just not that interesting.
I recently read a novel (well, not all of it) in which the author gave a long detailed description of a man eating a peach–how the knife cut it into slices, the color and texture of the peach and the way it tasted. I read every word because I was sure it had something to do with the story.
I suppose it might be interesting to someone who never saw or eaten a peach. If all she wrote was “the man sat down and ate a peach” my mind would have filled in the blanks, knowing full well what it is like to eat a peach.
OK now, before I start to get boring on the subject of peach eating, this post is really about the challenge of writing a historical novel based on the life and times of Saint Francis of Assisi.
I just threw out an entire chapter because it was boring. Being overly concerned with the historical facts stifled my creativity. I had to remind myself that I wasn’t writing a history text book or an unauthorized biography but using another person’s life as a symbol. The greater challenge is to write something that will present a fresh perspective rather than a rehash of everything that’s been previously written.
So, I have to trust my boredom instincts. If I’m bored by my own writing, so will the reader.