When my second book was published, friends and family began to get the impression that writing was more than “just a fling”.
After my third book was published, my friends and family started taking an interest in my writing.
Specifically, they started taking an interest in suggesting what I should write about next.
It’s been a little over a year since my last book came out. During that time, my muse took an extended holiday. Not overseas or (considering my genre) on another planet, just a little break to work on a tan.
This “gap” emboldened some of the constituency mentioned above to pepper me with (at least to them) great ideas.
Not being writers, they miss two critical points about many of their suggestions:
Writing is a personal creation (at least to me) and generally must bubble up from my own muse. There may be a trigger here or a tickle there from some other creative work, but the writing starts inside most of the time.
Many “great ideas” that are suggested are, in fact, pretty awful ideas. Either they would flat-out make bad reading or they just aren’t interesting enough to want to write about.
Generally, I will dismiss the idea with either kind demurral or, if feeling playful, I’ll elaborate on their idea, through which we both eventually see its flaws.
It’s funny, though, how the aspect towards me and my writing has changed from before that first book was published. Funnier still, is how little most people realize just how tough it is to create a successful book.
It’s hard enough to market the books I’ve already written without having to figure out how to sell a book about “THAT”.