I want to write a story and I can get started easily enough, but I don’t start with a clear beginning, middle and end in mind.
There is some pretty bog standard family downer stuff that I seem to gravitate to constantly, but I don’t have a ‘message’ for that either.
I thought short stories might be easier because they’re short, hahaha! How rude of me.
It’s not the length but the concept, the basic outline, the message that I want to send.
Now we’re back to the beginning.
What is the message I want to send?
I’ve been blogging about psychology and emotional wellness for a while already and have recently reimagined that site as contentforcontentment.com.
My message there is clear: we’re surrounded by content all the time and some if it can help you be more contented.
I’m happy to put my ideas out there without getting preachy for those people who like it and follow it. (I have a Diploma of Counselling and Bachelor of Social Science – Psychology so I’m not making stuff up out of thin air.)
But if my message is that there are options and we’re all responsible for working with the best options we can find, how do I translate that into fiction?
Is it hero’s journey stuff with a protagonist messing up their life and then coming good?
Is it a secondary character or a back story?
Do I have to be so consistent across writing non-fiction and fiction?
I read a lot of biographies, history, true crime and serious stuff.
I do love reading crime fiction and drama.
My favourite book is Middlemarch, where nothing much happens through its’ hundreds of pages. That style of 19th century writing was the soap opera and gossip mill of the day, but today seems so quaint and slow.
‘Write what you know’ is solid advice, but I know a little bit about a lot of things and I don’t have a burning passion about any one thing in particular, so where do I start?
These aren’t rhetorical questions – any tips I’m glad to hear.
I do love a spreadsheet and when I watch Midsomer Murders