We Who Are About to Write Salute You

I’ve been working at a pretty good pace these past couple of nights.  As I mentioned before, I finished most of the nitty-gritty setup, and have moved on to setting the real plot in motion.  I wrote a scene the other night that I really enjoyed, getting to know a character who I didn’t think would be more than a plot vehicle.  Turns out he’s kind of awesome, and his girlfriend is a bad ass.

Wave hello, Titus!

It also turns out that my characters know a lot more about what they have to do in order for the plot to unfold properly than I do.  I had another one of those moments where stuff just kind of happened without major forethought on my part, and I didn’t realize until I woke up this morning that there was no possible way the story could have moved forward realistically if I hadn’t done what I did.  Or what Serdaro did, I guess.  Mind of his own, that boy.

But anyway.  What I really wanted to say was that I think one of the reasons I’ve been productive lately, besides just simply getting over a hump, is that I’ve been on Twitter a lot.  I know.  I don’t say anything interesting.  But other people do.  I’m following a lot of authors, as well as some agents and publishers (besides my favorite comedians and such), which is kind of great.  It’s like a community where everyone is talking to themselves, but as long as you hit “refresh” at the right millisecond to catch it, you can have a little glimpse into their head.

Sure, the site is mostly populated with 13-year-old pop star fanatics, who are constantly having fan wars that baffle the mature human mind.  But as long as you build up the right network, it can be a very positive experience.  I think it’s great that most of my followers are other authors, trying to make it the same as I am, which is the same reason I enjoy reading comments on this blog, and checking out what other people are writing under the topics I usually use.

It’s probably no surprise that I prefer online community to the good old fashioned in-person variety.  Well, that’s not true.  There’s no substitute for being in the same room with people I like and know.  But with strangers, even if we have one big thing in common, I like the distance the internet gives me.  It’s because I have no social skills, really.  Don’t judge.  Or at least don’t tell me if you are judging.

The point I was trying to make, before I failed miserably, is that being around other writers, even virtually, is properly inspiring.  I think a couple of years ago I would have hated it.  I would have thought of it like a competition, and beat myself up over not shooting right to the top my first day on the scene, and resented other people for being “better” than I was.  But I really don’t feel that way.  I might not have any particular interest in reading what one person writes, but that doesn’t mean I can’t respect their right to say it.  Unless it’s really dumb.  So much for my mature human brain.

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One thought on “We Who Are About to Write Salute You

  1. I really enjoy following other writers as well. I find a few benefits:
    1. They know stuff I don’t, and are usually really generous when I ask, “How did you do that?”
    2. They are doing stuff I should be doing, and it gives me a kick in the butt to knuckle down and make the progress they are making.
    3. I know stuff they don’t, and I can be proud of my mini-success, AND I can feel helpful when someone asks me, “How did you do that?”

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