TCL’s #DiscussionSunday #LetsDiscuss2022 #8 and #LetsTalkBookish #6 – Choose Your Own Adventure.

New Letsdiscuss2022 with blue letstalkbookish

The question from Let’s Talk Bookish for April 29-June 5 is “Choose Your Own Adventure” which I take to mean that its a freebie. In which case, I am writing about:

Writing Inspiration vs Intimidation.

Discussion Sunday 2022

Disclaimer:

These are my personal opinions. I do not expect anyone to agree with anything here, and in fact, I’m certain that many will disagree and/or even hate many of the things I’ve written below. Sorry about that, but you are always welcome to express your own opinions – be they contrary or comparable – in the comments section. So, with that out of the way… let the controversy begin!

What made me think about this topic?

Let’s Talk Bookish is a weekly bookish meme created by Rukky @ Eternity Books, and is now hosted by Aria @ Book Nook Bits! Each Friday, there is a discussion topic for bloggers to write about, and this week I think that “choose your own adventure” means it is a freebie, So… there are no prompts. So, I’d been thinking about Writing Inspiration vs. Intimidation. My prompts are:

I’m sure that many of us book bloggers have thought about writing our own novels. In fact, some of the blogs I follow are by published authors. That made me think. Do book reviewers have what it takes to write novels ourselves? Do reading novels – both good and bad – inspire you or intimidate you regarding writing your own book? If a book isn’t all that enjoyable, do we think we could do better? If a book is really great, do we think we could write something that could be just as good?

My Thoughts…

Do book reviewers have what it takes to write novels ourselves?

Aside from the already published authors who also review books, I guess that depends. Obviously, we reviewers know what we like and what we don’t like. The more experienced among us know how to pinpoint exactly what works or doesn’t work in a book. But I don’t think that means we automatically have the ability to write our own books. If we translate this into another field, we know that – for instance – food critics may have the taste buds to determine if a dish is good or bad, but that doesn’t automatically make them a chef. I’m sure, however, that there are both food critics and book reviewers who have sometimes tried something and quickly said “oh, I could do better than that.” They might be deluding themselves, but it certainly must come to mind from time to time.

That brings me to my own writing. Regular followers of this blog know that I used to write poetry, and I’ve actually had some of my poems published. I can therefore hold out some hope that I have some writing talents (added to this, before I retired, I was employed as a grant writer for the non-profit sector). Strangely enough, I no longer have the urge to write poetry (it can be very emotionally draining), I don’t even read much poetry anymore, and I could never presume to review a book of poetry.

Do reading novels – both good and bad – inspire you or intimidate you regarding your own writing?

As I said above, when we read something that we think isn’t such a great work of fiction, I’m sure we’ve thought we could write something better. Obviously, for those with the creative bent, that could be an inspiration to try to do just that. On the other hand, when I read a book that is beautifully written, with a compelling story, I wonder if anyone could do better, and I’m humbled by the author’s talent. In addition, poets who succeed in publishing a whole book of poems really do intimidate me, and no, they don’t inspire me to try my hand at it anymore.

Are you inspired or intimidated at the idea of writing your own book?

It seems to me that I’m both inspired and intimidated. I doubt I’ll try to publish any more of my old poems. I think the best of those have already had their time in the limelight, and what’s left is mostly drivel.

As for a novel… confession time here. Yes, I am working on writing a book. Yes, it is true. Mind you, I haven’t written all that much (but I’m not intending on writing a long work, in any case), but I’ve had the idea in my head for a very long time. Now that I’m retired, I’ve decided I will work more on it and see what happens. Every time I read a book that I have to DNF I do think that I could do better with my own novel. That doesn’t always inspire me to write, but it does encourage me with the idea of writing my book. However, then I come upon a book that is an overwhelming 5/5 stars and I think to myself “how can I do that?” Frankly, that scares me, and I wonder if I have it in me to actually write something that readers won’t toss off as garbage.

This also makes me remember that I’ve gotten more than my fair share of requests for reviews that I’ve refused because they sound so bad. I mean, if the email doesn’t encourage me to read their book, how could their book be any good? I think I have pretty good instincts about this. For the most part, when I’ve agreed to read to read someone’s book when they come to me unsolicited for a review, I’ve been pleasantly surprised. On the other hand, when someone presses me so much that I finally give in and reluctantly agree to try their books, I’ve had to either DNF the books, or ended up finishing them, but rating them fairly low. So I also worry if I even have the ability to catch the attention of my fellow book bloggers! Mind you, that means I need to finish writing my novel, get it edited and proofread, and then I’ll have to try to get it published (or maybe even self-publish it), so I think there’s time for that.

By the way, although I’m pretty lazy about working on my book, I have signed up for a week long writers workshop that will take place in July in Ireland! I’m very excited about it, because one of the mentors is none other than the author Heather Webb, whose career I’ve been following faithfully since I read her first book.

Thanks again to Aria for keeping this up and for doing Link Parties for these discussion posts!

There you have it!

So… what about you?

Are you thinking of writing a novel? If so, do other authors’ works intimidate you or inspire you to write your book?

This post is also my 8th entry in the 2022 Discussion Challenge, hosted by Nicole @ Feed Your Fiction Addiction and Shannon @ It Starts at Midnight!

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15 thoughts on “TCL’s #DiscussionSunday #LetsDiscuss2022 #8 and #LetsTalkBookish #6 – Choose Your Own Adventure.

  1. I agree with basically everything you said here. Knowing what makes a book good doesn’t necessarily mean you can write a good book, but I do think it gives you a little bit of an edge. And I agree that reading other people’s writing can be both inspiring AND intimidating!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I guess I’d say I would be intimidated to attempt writing any novel or nonfiction book. I am not a very strong writer, never having absorbed those important grammar rules in school. I love it when I find a book that is especially well-written, though, and I do recognize poorly written prose. Just judgy I guess. Let’s discuss TBRs

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I’ve thought about writing a novel many times but I never get around to it because it’s really intimidating to me. I do write a lot of short stories as a practice but I have yet to write anything longer than 3000 words. Good luck with your novel!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I love reading and writing, but I don’t really have aspirations to become an author/novelist. I love writing essays, doing research, writing reviews and guides… so my blog is the perfect creative outlet for me! I get what I think are REALLY GOOD PLOT IDEAS but pass them on to my best friend to write them ahaah

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Less thinking about it, than being driven mad by trying to write fiction. Although I don’t give up I’ve been redrafting the same manuscript for years. I am a published poet too. I agree with you. I don’t think there is one answer to whether reviewers can also write books. It depends who the reviewer is and many published authors are asked to write reviews.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. I’ll be interested in your book too, if it ever reaches a public audience. I enjoy writing – I’m in a writing group – but have never been inspired to write a book. Reading as much as I do, I realise that the task of producing an inspiring plot and an effective narrative are skills that shouldn’t be underestimated.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. I think I prefer to escape into worlds that others have created. It takes so much time to write a book to the point of a polished finished product that I don’t know when I would fit it in.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. I might be tempted to write a memoir but just for my family! 😂 I admire writers and often wish I could magically be one! I’m eager to read your book!

    Liked by 1 person

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