Posted by: rebeccajrobare | February 26, 2012

Update, and regarding fiction

Well, that took a long time! I know I’ve been neglecting this blog. I was offered a full-time job — I’m now a research coordinator for Community Behavioral Health in Philadelphia — and I love it, but it has left me little time or energy to do computerish things when I’m not at work. And since the major purpose behind running a blog was to have a platform for non-fiction writing that I would be freelancing, then keeping up with it didn’t seem so urgent.

But I’m back, just for fun. I was bitten by the writing bug this weekend — the creative writing bug. Mostly this impulse died for me while I was writing my dissertation — I believe I’ve started two stories in the past 14 months — but this week I thought of two I wanted to at least put on paper, to see where they will go.

I’m putting the beginnings here for you to read, if you so choose. I’ve never before been one to force my unfinished writings on my unsuspecting friends — in the past I usually at least had the decency not to ask anyone to read anything until it was finished — but this is kind of an experiment for me. It’s an experiment to see whether I will be taking writing back up as a hobby.  And if I do, what do I want to do with what I write? I’d love to be a published author, but let’s face it, that takes skill, time, and luck, and I don’t know whether I have any of that. Well, I have a little skill, but I don’t know whether it’s enough. But if I am going to be writer, even as a hobby, then it seems fitting that I should work to get better at it over time, whether my ultimate goal is publication or not. Because let’s face it, wanting to be a published author when I haven’t even finished a story in years is like me wanting to be an Olympic fencer — not impossible, but it’s a number of steps down the line. If I wanted to be an Olympic fencer, my first goal would have to be to start fencing regularly. So if I want to write, my first goal is to start writing regularly.

This brings me to why I’m posting my writing here and thus inflicting it on the world. First, my friends tend to be well-read individuals who like reading things that are written well. So maybe you’ll be able to tell me what is working and what is not working about my writing. This will help me get better over time. And second, if I know you’re reading this, if I’m lucky enough and doing this with enough skill that you want more, I’m more likely to keep writing.

Of course, it’s possible that I’m writing something no one really wants to read.If that’s the case, I hope you’ll tell me — I can always refrain from posting it here. (Or you could refrain from reading my blog, but I do feel like if I’m going to have a blog, even one as lonely and untended as mine, I should be writing something that someone wants to read, even if it’s not always the thing I think I ought to be writing.

So, I look forward to your thoughts on my stories. I’ll offer one note, and one request. The note is that although both stories feature an Empire, they are unrelated — Empires can serve a useful purpose in many fantasy worlds. Second, if you are going to comment with your thoughts, please either be nice or be constructive. If you want to shower me with praises without being specific, I can’t mind the ego boost. But if you want to tell me something’s terrible, please tell me what specifically is terrible and what you think would be better. “Ack, your writing sucks! I want to poke my eyes out with a stick!” may be honest, but it doesn’t really help me improve as a writer.

Thanks, all. I hope you are interested in my stories.

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