Hi, my name is Brendan, and this is my first real attempt at blogging(so bear with me if I stray away from the point please)

I want to start a discussion about writing, not about what you write or what style you write in, because that would be a bit boring I think. I want to know what makes you type certain scenes, what forces you to create characters that you never dreamed of creating before, and how you feel when you write something.

I’ll share something with you, I am terrified that one day I’ll wake up and find that I can’t write anymore, that whatever is inside of me that allows me to create scenes and people, to fabricate stories, will no longer be there. It’s silly I know, but when I finish a story, I’ll read it and wonder how I managed to do it, I hope I’m not the only person who does this. I’ll try to dissect the character speaking, or the scene itself and end up with more questions than answers. If I write in the voice of an old woman, I wonder how I could possibly do that, because I am not an old woman, and I have no insight into how one would think or act, but still, the story is there in front of me and although I know that I have written it, I don’t know how I have written it.

It makes me wonder why some people become writers, and others don’t. Is it genetic? Are we born with an ability to write(good or badly) or is it simply something we learn to do. I think that we’re born with it, that it just comes naturally to some people, while others will never be able to experience the extraordinary feeling that comes with writing a story or indeed finishing a novel. As a child, my imagination was very active, but until I started writing, I never made the connection between my early years and my work. Also, until about two years ago, when I started studying for my leaving cert, I never had the desire to write, so this adds another question. If it hadn’t have been for my English teacher encouraging the class to write, would I have ever picked up a pen and started? Would I have discovered the amazing feeling that comes with writing? Would my ability and need to write have stayed dormant inside of me? So while I really believe that people are born with the ability to write, I also think that our conditioning has an influence on whether or not we tap into that ability. What do you think?

I’ve also realised, just recently, that when I’m writing something that I feel is working quite well, I visualise the scene as I’m writing it, but I do so without noticing until I add the final full stop. It is a strange feeling, writing with your mind almost, and then you double take to find that you have not been ‘watching’ a scene, or ‘listening’ to a voice, but you have been tapping away at the keyboard, unknowingly so. I don’t know if that’s just how I write, or not, but that’s why I’m writing this blog. I want to know how others feel when they write, what you see in your minds eye and how you come up with the voice that somehow you produce onto the page. I find it startling, really, that a voice, or a sentence can just ‘pop’ into your head out of nothing, and mould itself into a story, woven with deep emotions and complicated relationships.

Do you become emotionally attached to the characters in your work? I do, and sometimes I have to stop and reassure myself that they are not real people, that what is happening to them is only happening because I am making it happen. That when a character dies, they do so because I kill him or her. I get so close to some of my characters, I stop thinking of them as figments of my imagination, and start to see them as real people, narrating to me, telling me what to write. I don’t feel that I am alone in this thinking, but again, I want to know if anyone else feels the same as I do.

I know I’ve rambled on and on for a bit, and I’m sorry if I’ve bored some of you, but I’m hoping that some of you might leave a comment and maybe touch on some of the points I’ve made.

Thanks for reading,
Brendan McLoughlin

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