Thursday, July 8, 2010

Running out of things to talk about

Something odd seems to happen to me when I'm in the middle of a writing piece.

At least, this feels very familiar, so I'm guessing it's happened to me before.

When I'm in the middle of an opening draft, I run out of things to talk about writing wise. If you look at my Twitter feed or my Facebook page it's full of things about my wedding or LeBron James or the latest Bobby Gonzalez nonsense.

But very little writing stuff.

Why is that?

Because I've become sick of updating my word count. How interested are you in the fact that I wrote 1,000 words today? Truth is, you aren't. Or you shouldn't be.

What you should care about is what the book's about. And I'm not ready to tell you that. I don't even completely know yet. So I'm not going to talk about that.

I'm going to talk about anything and everything else.

That's the thing about Twitter and Facebook and the blogs. It's very insular. We communicate too often with other writers, and I feel at times we shut the reader out. The casual reader doesn't care how many words I wrote today. They don't care how you're going to go out and promote your next book.

They care about the story. Do they want to read it?

Writing about how you create a marketing plan, your brand, and your work ethic aren't going to sell a reader on that.

So that's what we as writers need to focus on. Or at least, I should.

And since I'm not ready to talk about the book yet, I'll stick to LeBron.

I only have another 18 hours to do it.


David Cranmer said...

I'm interested in word count. Not every post, but I find what other writers are able to accomplish interesting. Sports not so much. Just me.

Gerald So said...

I don't enjoy general writing talk. Everyone ultimately puts words on the page differently. One writer can say, "I write five pages a day." Another can say, "I write for two hours a day." One writer's method probably won't work for another, so it's not helpful to say generally how you write.

It makes sense that you can't talk about what you're writing in the early stages of writing it. You can probably talk specifically about how you tackled a writing problem in your finished works. That's more interesting to me than general process talk.

I've also found, no matter how much I enjoy a writer's fiction/poetry, I won't read their nonfiction, I won't read their interviews, blogs, or tweets if those are dry.

pattinase (abbott) said...

Once my husband asked me what I was writing. I told him the whole story--as I saw it. I never wrote it. Telling it takes the air out.

Dave White said...

I have no problems talking about what a book is about when I'm writing it--when I actually know what that book is about. Right now I really don't. At least not enough to talk about it with anyone beyond my agent.

Jen Forbus said...

Dave, all those other things you talk about are what make you good at social media!

You shouldn't feel that you need to talk about writing all the time. It's nice to know who you are as a person, that's what social media should be about...the ability to do that when we don't live next door to you or move in the same circles, etc.

If you want to talk about sports, talk about sports. If you want to talk about the flavor of your wedding cake, do that. If you reached your writing goal and want to shout it from the rooftops, then shout away!

Just be you in all the many facets of Dave White!

Bryon Quertermous said...

I agree with Jen. It's the little moments of life that make a blog interesting, not just endless writer talk. It's like writing characters, you can't just write about a detective being a detective. You have to write about him being a father, or husband, or alcoholic, or shopping addict, or baseball fan, or whatever to give him some depth.

Sadly sports is your only depth. And cake.

Bizarro said...

I'd rather hear about beer and cookies anyway. And read the book when it's done and ready for me to read.