I was talking to someone the other day about writing vs. storytelling. I remember Stephenie Meyer bringing this up with people, how she wasn’t necessarily a writer but a storyteller. I feel the same way. If I was a true “writer,” then my stuff would be much more eloquent and literary. I’d most likely be using longer, smarter-sounding words and phrases haha. Instead I’ve tried to focus on creating a story and telling it in a way that’s enjoyable to read and imagine, and surprises the reader in some way.
I also think it’s important to create characters you care about greatly. My absolute favorite character is actually from the other YA series I wrote that’s sitting in my computer right now. He’s ill-tempered and dark, with a hard past and scruffy facial hair (my faaavorite), and an extremely soft, loving side hidden deep inside him. He’s the kind of character I want people to dislike at first, but come to love and adore and wish were real. I know that I definitely wish he was real, just like I do with most of the characters I’ve created! I absolutely love when I read a book and ache for that character to be a real person instead of just stuck inside paper/a laptop forever. Maybe someday a really smart tech nerd from the Silicon Valley can invent a way to make book characters come to life. JK
I’ve read books before that had a great literary quality to them, but the characters and overall story were slightly “blah.” I’ve read novels where there were many mistakes and some questionable choices when it came to the writing quality, BUT, the story was so rad and vivid that I didn’t care about the other stuff. Some critics and readers have ripped apart Twilight as being “bad” and “junk,” but in my opinion, they’re wrong–people mostly just care about a good story. Her story was good. It was unique and new. So who cares if tenses are switched around once in a while? It’s a completely fresh take on vampires for goodness sake!
I don’t have a degree in English. I haven’t taught master classes on creative writing, and I most definitely don’t give a crap about writing anything literary. I love stories. And people, and creating all different kinds of all of it. Hopefully others appreciate that and will come to love these imaginary people and places I’ve created as much as I do. 🙂