When I finally embraced the self-proclaimed title of Writer, others immediately wanted to pigeon-hole me. What kind of writing? Literary? Commercial? Vignettes? Memoir? What? What? What?
It’s a question I liken to politics. Don’t ask my political affiliations because you might not be willing to accept my truth. I refuse to be labeled and shut off from the ideas and energy of other thinkers. I apply a similar philosophy to my writing. I’m a little bit this and a little bit that…
While people in the industry may find this frustrating, I find it freeing.
I can’t pretend to be anything I’m not. My writer brain really is twisted and I provide it the flexibility to go where it wants and once committed then that’s it and there’s no turning back.
When people ask me what kind of writing I do I usually sputter and tell them that I do a bit of everything.
I write an opinion column for Black Press (one of the largest publications in Canada with affiliates in the USA), I blog, I do freelance articles, I write short stories, I’ve written two books—one is YA Contemporary Thriller and the other is an adult/YA fast-paced novel with shades of Girl on a Train by Paula Hawkins, all mashed up with one of my favourite YA books, Eleanor and Park by Rainbow Rowell.
Phew! I’m also working on a non-fiction proposal for a parenting book and to my own surprise—guess what I did…come on guess…
Ah, heck you’ll never guess…
I wrote a poem. Oh my goodness, I’m so dang proud of myself I’m blushing.
The poem is called “Oh Sister” and is approximately 600 words. The poem itself is a bit dark and melancholy but it has been very well received by many who’ve heard it. I can’t print it here because I submitted it to a contest and of course, there are rules against that sort of thing.
I never imagined myself writing poetry—I still don’t—but now I know it’s within my twisted writer brain and capable of delivering a strong message. That’s a pretty cool thing don’t cha think?
Overall, I realized I shouldn’t minimize the art of writing and specifically the artistry of word placement and selection.
Words, whether displayed in paragraphs of prose, used in dialogue, or in first-person past tense telling a fantastical story, the main thing is that the words make it onto the page and not continue to rattle around in gray matter.
Happy writing everyone—whatever that means to you.