Sometimes the story isn’t where you think

Thought-provoking as ever, Emma Darwin’s latest post explores what happens when the story you’re writing turns out to be something else entirely. There’s a great quote from Harper Lee which also explores something I often struggle with: Sometimes you have to write quite a lot of something, to discover that that’s not where these characters’ real story is… With the story I’m trying to write at the moment, about replacing people who die, I’ve started several times. Each time is more developed, and I have more understanding of the main character – but what if the main character isn’t? Part …

Avoiding the inferiority complex

This week I’ve had a couple of experiences that happen on an all-too-regular basis. Yesterday, I read the opening of Donna Tartt’s recent book The Goldfinch. Earlier in the week I finished Jodie Picoult’s The Storyteller. Both left me feeling not inspired to write, but depressed – because I can’t write like that. Here’s why that’s a dumb reaction to have. They’re two very different authors. Very different genres, audiences etc. I don’t usually like Jodie Picault – her twisting endings don’t usually feel like they fit the book as it’s been developed, but I really enjoyed this book; I thought …