Monday, 12 September 2016

Writing - Create real people not characters

The title for today's blog may seem slightly strange but it comes in part from Ernest Hemingway and I think I know what he meant.

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The above is the actual full quote from the writer. He was quite outspoken in his opinions about writing but well worth considering.

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When I go about my daily business, whether it be in the supermarket, in the pub or walking on the street I tend to watch and listen to those around me. Obviously, I am as unobtrusive as possible, but things said, the way people move and their behaviours all contribute to add depth to the people I create on the page. Waiting rooms can be a particularly rich source of inspiration!

My people, Patrick Steele, Naomi Kobayashi and the team that support them, are multifaceted born from my own experiences and from those I've observed. In saying that, the type of detail that helps to create the people in my stories are small things, personal habits, likes, dislikes and fears. In other words those things that make us human.

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Ernest Hemingway (1899 - 1961)

Hemingway wrote a plethora of quotes more of which I'll share with you shortly but he was principally a writer of stories who didn't mind a bit of diversification into poetry etc. His first important work was 'The Sun Also Rises' but he also produced many short stories. Eventually his services to literature were recognised with the award of the Nobel Prize for Literacy in 1954. Like many other writers he suffered mentally and was treated for depression using 'the latest' electric shock treatment which he said disrupted his memory. He committed suicide in 1961.

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The above quote is so powerful and accurate because when you create people you are pouring out things that are from your life experience and knowledge. You bleed them on to the page.

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The apprentices quote I find to be the most positive, optimistic view of the art of writing. There are so many nay sayers out there that can't wait to rubbish a writer's efforts it is amazing that anyone ever writes anything. Of course they've all been to school and studied English so they believe that they have a greater command of grammar than you have and take great delight in correcting you.



The fact is grammar is an ever changing subject that, like clothes, suffers fashions and fads. Even Charles Dickens was considered inept in the area of writing good English! So my message is don't worry just ensure that your writing is comprehensible.

And finally, I will leave you with the way you write to get the best from your imagination,

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God Bless