Pretentious horseshit that happens to be true #1



Many years ago I read that fiction writing is about telling essential truths.

I don't remember who said that, but he or she went on to say that all good fiction rings true.

I've just checked and a lot of writers have said similar things.

E.g.:

"There is no doubt that fiction makes a better job of the truth" - Doris Lessing

"Fiction is a lie, and good fiction is the truth inside the lie" - Stephen King

When I first came across this notion I thought it was horseshit.

But now I'm coming round to believing it.

My take on it is that what counts is what's going on in the writer's mind when he writes. Yes, I know this is self-evident, but bear with me.

If the author is writing for effect, with the aim only of impressing his readers, the result will be artificial and the reader will sniff out the artifice and reject it.

But if the author is using the voice that comes naturally to him, then the genuine nature of his narrative will convey itself to the reader, who will (at least some of the time) respond favourably.

In short, writing is about honesty. Being (to use that old cliche) true to yourself.

The same applies when you're blogging.

Let's say you're a blogger and you try to impress your readers that you're a stand-up guy by putting forward morally upright opinions, the result will likely be dull to the point of unreadability.

Similarly, if you try to persuade people that you're highly intelligent by talking about complex issues you have no interest in, you'll send them to sleep.

But - and I'm by no means the first person to say this - if you blog about the things that interest you, your enthusiasm will be felt in your words.

So, in your writing, always be true to yourself.

Otherwise there's no point in doing it, and you might as well spend your spare time stamp-collecting or something.

See:

Books should be fun

Blogging as a writer

Do you want to write a story?

The rules to follow when you write stories

Vist: my books page

Photo from Pixabay

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