A blog I follow on writing posted this lovely YouTube video of my favorite author, Brandon Sanderson:
His personal story is compelling to me on several levels.
I’ve said elsewhere on this site that it feels like I do a number of things at the “karaoke” level — well enough that people are impressed, but only when it’s free. Writing is one such endeavor.
Songwriting for Christian worship services is another. I have over a hundred songs inspired by sermons and Scripture over the last seventeen years. Some have been used in church services for a season, many have been files taking up space on a hard drive. Similarly, I’ve written hundreds of thousands of words, including two complete novel manuscripts and several short stories. But most of those are (for now) using up cloud storage space and nothing more.
Positive feedback from alpha readers is helpful. But let’s be honest; these are my friends and acquaintances over the years. They’re willing to pick up and read a novel because we already have a connection. I won’t be so lucky with your average reader browsing through a pile of self-published e-books on Amazon.
A friend of mine sent me this picture, which I took as much needed encouragement:
So… why write? Am I willing to put forth the effort to craft the seven or eight novels bouncing in my head at present, knowing they may do nothing more than collect dust and entertain my kids? Am I willing to pen songs for personal worship knowing they might never be played in a public setting? Am I willing to throw a handful of words onto this webpage and click “Publish” knowing I might never have a bunch of Likes or hits?
Yes. I hope you are too.
I reached the end of Part Three (out of five parts) of Words of Radiance today.
Let’s see… no spoilers, so… all I can say is,
Seriously, the climactic scene thus far built up and then that chapter appeared to end with a hook before a new chapter about some other character doing some other scene and I very nearly skipped ahead to find out what happened next until I remembered “oh wait, the character in this chapter is in the same place, so this continues the action GAAAAH why am I thinking about this, READ MORE.”
I probably don’t read enough, so perhaps I am too easily satisfied / tricked into turning the page. But I have been thoroughly pleased with plot twists and surprises along the way.
Stupid work, and my own writing, and you know, spending time with the kids, and eating, and stuff like that getting in the way.
I meant to be kidding about the recent post saying I’d forget about blogging for awhile in order to read Words of Radiance, Brandon Sanderson’s latest epic fantasy offering.
But it is captivating my thoughts, my attention, and my free time.
What I love about Sanderson’s work in Way of Kings and this book is how he includes some nuggets of truth and morality without getting preachy. He also does this from different character’s perspectives, so sometimes a reasonable case might be made for each of a pair of conflicting values.
Although I wonder if he might have watched a little too much Game of Thrones with the surprising out-of-nowhere death of what I thought was a major character early on in the book. That’s spoiler-ish without being a spoiler, so I don’t feel guilty.
The book is interspersed with gorgeous artwork, just like the first. I’m finding it well worth my time.
Life before death. Strength before weakness. Journey before destination.
Reading before blogging.