Practical advice for the beginning novelist

Today, I’m delighted to be able to host a Guest post by the talented Cheri Roman, fellow blogger at The Brass Rag, and author of ‘Descent’.  A lady who understands how hard it is to fulfil that dream…

“How do you come up with all that cool stuff in your novels? Your characters and settings are awesome. When I’m reading your novel, it feels like I’m right there. And your villains…” (shudders delicately) “…super evil.”

This is a portion of the fantasy conversation I’d love to have with a reader someday. It ends with the fan asking for my autograph and assuring me that I deserve a Pulitzer. For writing fantasy genre fiction. Hey, if you’re going to dream, go big or go home, I always say.

My fantasy also includes a secluded writing spot; four clean, white walls and a huge bay window through which I can see little forest creatures cavorting on a wide, green lawn ringed by ancient redwoods. No phone, TV, or (gasp) Facebook. Best of all – hours upon hours of uninterrupted writing time.

But the operative word here is “fantasy.” These are rare scenarios, unless, of course, you are Dean Koontz or Nora Roberts. (Seriously, have you seen their houses?) For many authors, the writing life looks more like this:

Get up at five a.m., go to your day job. Work all day, constantly distracted by story ideas, terrified that they will escape before you can capture them. You steal the odd moment and write on whatever is handy: file folders, notepads, the desk calendar, napkins. Frustration sets in because you end up accidentally filing, covering, losing or throwing the notes away. You consider getting a notes app on your phone, but you worry that your boss will accuse you of making personal calls on company time.

The work day is over; you hurry home. Ideas are still buzzing between your ears as you maneuver through traffic. You arrive home and the kids/spouse/pets need your attention, so you feed and brush everyone and then, finally, the house is quiet and you hurry to your writing space and….your mind goes blank. You fear you’ve used all your creativity just to get through the day. But you power through. You pull out the crumpled napkin, power-gulp an energy drink and you write. Sometime around four a.m. you stumble into bed where your spouse gives you a sleepy side-eye but you are too tired to notice. You fall into the bed, already unconscious. The alarm goes off at five. Time to start over.

Alternately, you save your writing energy for the weekend and your spouse complains that they never see you, because you spend Saturdays and Sundays behind a closed door with this sign on it:

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The writing life is challenging whether you work a day job or not. Business, family and writing pull you in opposing directions. Plus, you have to sleep sometime. But for authors, giving up isn’t an option. Not writing causes mental and emotional agita. So you steal the moments and write the words that torment you until you put them on paper. It isn’t easy, but it’s necessary. So do it.

That’s my best advice. Create the space in your life for the passionate art of writing well. Surround yourself with like-minded people who support your efforts and dreams. Explain to your significant other how important writing is. Ask for their support. Be courageous enough to say, “no,” in order to guard your writing time. And write. Every chance you get, consistently, creatively, bravely. Write.

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Passionate about Short Fiction

Here is the latest in the series of Guest Posts from fellow bloggers on the subject of Passion, whether literary or personal, which I’ll be posting regularly on a Thursday. If you would like to contribute, please drop me a line at kasia_oz (at) hotmail (dot) com.

Today, Michael Haynes joins us to discuss his passion for writing short fiction: a passion I have come to share! Michael not only blogs about his dedication to writing every day, but also about his incredibly prolific and varied publications at Michael Haynes – A Writing Blog.

Hope you enjoy Michael’s Passion Post.

Lately, when I’ve been writing up biographies for myself for websites or publications, I’ve been more and more likely to mention that I’m an “ardent” reader and writer of short fiction. And one of the synonyms for “ardent” is “passionate”, so when Kasia asked me to write about something I’m passionate about, short fiction seemed like a natural fit!

There was a time when writers could conceivably make some kind of living from writing, at least primarily, short fiction. Writers for the glossy or “slick” magazines like F. Scott Fitzgerald and O. Henry were able to command per-word rates for their fiction which are rare today for even the most prestigious publications. On the other end of the scale, there was such a large demand for fiction for the pulps relative to the number of writers that people who were prolific enough could earn a good bit of money for the time even at a penny a word.

Those days are, for the most part, gone. There may only be one writer living today (Harlan Ellison) who can say they’ve made a living writing primarily short stories. There’s been a small renaissance in online science fiction and fantasy short fiction markets. There are probably more markets that pay “professional” rates for SF/F now than there have been in quite a while. Even so, it would be quite a challenge to make enough sales per year to even those markets to earn a living.

And yet, I put almost all of my writing and reading time into short fiction. Why is that? It’s because it’s what I love. When I was a youngster in the 1980s, I collected anthologies of short fiction, new and old. And every time I’ve taken up writing, I’ve gravitated toward writing short stories. I enjoy the way that the form encourages writers to strip away unnecessary elements. It also makes it less risky to experiment with different styles and methods of storytelling. A failed experiment for a 2,000 word short story results in much less unfruitful effort than a failed experiment with a novel.

I’ll never get rich writing short fiction. I’ll never get famous for it, either. But it’s what I love to read and what I love to write. Might I try to write and publish novels in the future? Well, I certainly wouldn’t rule it out. But for now, short stories are what I’m passionate about and where I choose to devote my literary energy.

You can follow Michael’d blog at: http://michael-haynes.blogspot.com.au/

One Against Many: Sacrifice, and A Passion For Overcoming Impossible Odds

Here is the latest in the series of Guest Posts from fellow bloggers on the subject of Passion, whether literary or personal, which I’ll be posting regularly on a Thursday. If you would like to contribute, please drop me a line at kasia_oz (at) hotmail (dot) com.

Today we have a truly inspiring post from W.E.Linde at The Weathered Journal, who blogs about writing, and his passion for fantasy worlds. He is the author of the novella Prince of Graves, and is working on the Desolation War Saga. Having read Prince of Graves, I can highly recommend it! Tolkien fans will particularly enjoy it I think.

Hope you enjoy W.E. Linde’s Passion Post.

“We must walk open-eyed into that trap, with courage, but small hope for ourselves. For, my lords, it may well prove that we ourselves shall perish utterly in a black battle far from the living lands; so that even if Barad-dûr be thrown down, we shall not live to see a new age. But this, I deem, is our duty.”
Gandalf, The Last Debate, The Return of the King, by J.R.R. Tolkien

“Never tell me the odds!”
Han Solo, The Empire Strikes Back

Writers are, quite literally, troublemakers. They spend a great deal of time fomenting conflict, and then they place characters right in the middle of whatever sordid mess they had concocted. Of course, that’s exactly what readers expect. Conflict, whether as the central point of the novel, or simply the propellant to force the characters along a plot line, is arguably one of the most vital aspects of a story that makes it relevant to the reader (and therefore interesting). Regardless of the genre one enjoys to read and write, conflict of some sort will always play a central part. I’d go far as to say that the conflict is one of the main reasons the reader is even interested in a given character. How many people would really want to read an entire book about a Hobbit that likes to eat and to entertain? But throw him, against his better judgment, into a quest to defeat a dragon, and now suddenly you’ve got a reason to pay attention.

Initial sketch for artwork of Smaug by Corey Godbey, at http://lightnightrains.blogspot.com.au

Entire books and countless web sites have parsed apart various types of conflict, and how to apply it to specific genres. As a writer, I’ve set my characters against many kinds of obstacles, but as I look over my previously written stories, my current works in progress, and my planned writing projects, I see a pattern that does, in fact, demonstrate the type of conflict that I am quite passionate about; namely, conflict that forces the protagonist to sacrifice for something loved, something cherished, or an ideal that transcends him or her.
Stories that present a protagonist, whether a hero(ine) or anti-hero(ine), devoted or reluctant, who must face obstacles that are seemingly overwhelming and impossible to conquer, almost always draws a reader in. Such stories speak to a shared reality for every human who has ever lived; namely, in life, we all find ourselves facing an antagonistic world, and often we feel alone as we have to face challenges without end. Sometimes, in the face of overwhelming aggression or injustice, the only thing we can do is to stand up for what is good, and hope that by sacrifice we can ultimately overcome whatever evil powers have darkened our world.
I believe that the fantasy genre is wonderfully and ideally suited for the idea of what I’ll refer to as the sacrificial hero. Paradoxically, fantasy allows for a more literal rendition of the protagonist who must somehow find the means to stand fast against the forces of evil (dragons, dark lords, etc). And while I’ll admit that such stories can be formulaic and predictable, this is where the skill of the writer is key. Often, but not always, you can rest easy knowing that the hero is going to prevail somehow, one way another. The key to a great story is how this “somehow” is delivered. See, in the story of the hero who is willing to sacrifice everything to stand for what is right, the hero doesn’t have to win. Delivered properly, the hero or heroine who gives up everything in their efforts to do what is right will always somehow be victorious, although quite possibly not in the way originally intended.
So the characters I love to read and write about, whether they know it or not at the outset, will ultimately find themselves having to choose to stand up for something in the face of overwhelming adversity, or to capitulate. Since I tend to like a certain grittiness in my writing (and a certain realism), these characters will not always make the right choices. But underneath it all, the greatest heroes will be ready to sacrifice something dear in order to do the right thing. And when a hero is willing to stand up for what is right, despite the odds, there is little that the forces of evil can do to take that victory away. That is the essence of heroic fantasy. How can you not be passionate about that?

Passionate about Reading

Today, the latest in the series Guest Posts from fellow bloggers on the subject of Passion, whether literary or personal, which I’ll be posting regularly on a Thursday. If you would like to contribute, please drop me a line at kasia_oz (at) hotmail (dot) com.

Today we have a great post from Shannon at Isle of Books, who blogs intelligently and insightfully about both her writing journey and her reading – and it’s wonderfully clear how passionate she is about reading, although she has some worrying predictions about its future.

Hope you enjoy Shannon’s Passion Post.

When Kasia asked me to write about one of my passions, my first thought was, which one? My list of passions grows longer and deeper the older I get. By the time I’m an old lady, I fully expect to have more passions than I can remember. Some of the ones currently topping the list are: writing, horses, dressage, my horse, my dog, water conservation, books, and style. Ultimately, I chose to talk about reading.

If you’ve spent any amount of time on my blog, you probably know that I want to write books. This is something I’ve wanted to do for a long time and while the whys and hows of my career choices have changed, I’ve always wanted to write. I have a long list of reasons why, but I’ll stick to the one that dovetails with this assignment.

People don’t love to read anymore. I want to change that.

Right now, you’re probably getting ready to leave me a comment and yell at me. Okay. I’m young. What do I know? Probably nothing. But what I do know is that, as I’ve grown up, I’ve listened to more and more of my peers voice disgruntled opinions about books and reading.

“I hate reading.”

“Reading is boring.”

“Why do I have to read this?”

“I don’t have time for this.”

Many of the people I grew up with, even the ones who liked to read when we were little, just don’t enjoy it anymore.

I find this supremely sad. And yet, if you look around, it’s really no surprise.

In the US, we don’t stress reading and writing. We stress math and science. Science and math. As long as you’re marginally literate, that’s fine. It’s okay that you can barely spell most words. It’s okay that you can hardly throw an essay together. Don’t worry about it. You’re the future of our country. Math and science.

Which isn’t to say those things aren’t important. They are.

I just don’t see why certain subjects are deemed “more important” than others. During my sophomore year of college, I went on an apartment tour with my roommate. The guy who was leading our tour, maybe five or so years older than us, asked us what we were studying. She said biology. I said writing. He glances at both of us and says to her, “So yours is harder”.

Needless to say, we didn’t rent at that complex.

Let me tell you another story.

‘Summer reading’ courtesy of ‘YourKidsEd.com’

When I was a kid, they thought I was almost too dumb to go to kindergarten. Whatever tests they gave me, I apparently didn’t do well on. You know, because testing five-year-olds is oh-so effective. Anyway, my mom got them to take me, instead of keeping me back a year. On the second day of kindergarten, they taught us to read. And I was in love. I read everything I could get my hands on. The books for kids. National geographic. The tv guide. The newspaper. Cookbooks. Gossip magazines. Dictionaries. Whatever book was lying around, whether or not it was appropriate to me. I ate up words as often as I could get them.

You know what happened to that kindergartener? In middle school, she was placed into honors classes for all the core subjects. In high school, she took honors and AP classes, before graduating as salutatorian of her class (second highest GPA). In her final year of college, she was in her department’s honors program.

To what do I equate this success?

Reading.

Yes, folks, that’s why I’m passionate about reading. Because I firmly believe that it changed my destiny. Because I learned to read and to read well and to love it, I became the person I am today.

The person on the other end of the computer telling you how, of all the passions she could write about, she chose to talk about reading.

A passion for New Worlds

Today, the latest in the series Guest Posts from fellow bloggers on the subject of Passion, whether literary or personal, which I’ll be posting regularly on a Thursday. If you would like to contribute, please drop me a line at kasia_oz (at) hotmail (dot) com.

Today we have an inspirational post from Matt Williams at Stories by Williams, who blogs about writing, fascinating new developments in science, and everything else sci fi! I understand that if you are interested, there may still be some spots available for stories in the Yuva Anthology, so please contact Matt at his terrific and always informative blog Stories by Williams.

Hope you enjoy Matt’s Passion Post.

A good friend of mine once told me how she dreamed her son would one day set foot on Mars. She lamented that, as an adult, he no longer entertained the same dreams of going into space as he had as a child. But to her, the dream was still alive. As she put it, “the awe­some­ness of our great uni­verse, of the chaotic ran­dom­ness, of the beauty of this world and the things we have to be grate­ful for, and of how utterly minus­cule we peo­ple really are in the grand scheme of things,” were still things that intrigued her.

Immediately, I felt something growing within me. It was that same sense of child-like wonder I would feel anytime the something or someone reminded me of the true awe and wonder of universe and our place within it. I immediately recommended she write her thoughts down, and then added to that by saying we all needed to write something about space travel and base our next writing project on the subject. As fellow members of a writing group, this was sort of our thing. We were in the midst of compiling an anthology of science fiction and speculative writing, and were on the lookout for something new to write about.

The timing couldn’t have been better. Not only was Mars being featured in the news quite heavily, ever since Curiosity had finished the last leg of its journey and was beginning to land. What’s more, the passing of Ray Bradbury had also drawn my attention back to the venerated master after many years, not to mention what many considered to be his magnum opus, The Martian Chronicles. If possible, I wanted our work to capture the same spirit of his work, focusing on the lives of individuals, but also the larger issues of new frontiers, colonization, and what happens when one people are pushed aside to make way for another.

Immediately, friends of ours began to enlist, friends and colleagues who were part of the same writing group. They offered their ideas, their insights, and their research skills to help our group find a suitable location to write about, as well as other details we knew were going to come up. In addition to embracing all the philosophical, moral and spiritual implications, we wanted a narrative that was based on hard science as much as possible. We also wanted our story, even though it was inspired by the works of other great writers, to be original in its outlook. Hence, the people in our story would not be going to Mars, the Moon, or Alpha Centauri. Instead, they would be going to Gliese 581, to the fourth planet from the red dwarf which NASA scientists believe to be the most Earth-like planet in our corner of the Galaxy.

After several months of writing, recruiting, and imagining, our story has really begun to take shape. And to think, it all began in the imagination of a mother and her son. But then again, that’s how the best ideas are born, aren’t they? They begin as germs of curiosity and fascination, and eventually grow to become articulated visions. And finally, they strike a chord with readers, igniting their imaginations by sharing that same sense of awe and wonder that inspired the idea in the first place. And that’s precisely what we set out to accomplish. Only time will tell if we were successful…

Literary Passion

Today, the latest in the series Guest Posts from fellow bloggers on the subject of Passion, whether literary or personal, which I’ll be posting regularly on a Thursday. If you would like to contribute, please drop me a line at kasia_oz (at) hotmail (dot) com.

Today we have a wonderful post from Austin Bishop at The Bishop Review, who blogs his reviews of books (including from Indie authors), film, television series and everything else sci fi! Austin is also a budding writer, and I’d encourage you to check out Bishop Reviews.

Hope you enjoy Austin’s Passion Post.

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Passion has almost become a dirty word. You say it and most people automatically think something sexual. It’s not dirty or inappropriate at all and we all have at least one passion. I could write thousands upon thousands of words about my passions, but I fear that I would bore you after a couple thousand words. So I’ll just talk about one of my passions, mostly because I can write so much about it. I love Science Fiction. Crazy, right?

Science Fiction, or Sci-fi, is such a broad term. The film Looper is Sci-fi and yet so is Asimov’s short story collection, I, Robot. I could name a million other works of fiction from film, television and novels, but you probably get the picture. For years different authors have helped to build the genre and it continues to improve and be one of a kind. If I had to pick my favorite Sci-fi series, the one I’m most passionate about, it would be Doctor Who. Now I’ve wanted to make this post pertain mostly to written fiction, but Doctor Who is just that. While it has spent about 50 years on the small television screens in a wide range of nations, it has also been put into some of the most entertaining books I’ve ever read. I think the series is proof of what Science Fiction can be; it can inspire hope and give its readers (or viewers) a sobering look at the dark side of mankind.

Now some might be thinking, “How can you be passionate for a genre when there are so many terrible books out there?” My answer is that I don’t necessarily look at Sci-fi as a genre. I mean you can have Sci-fi comedies, like Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy and you can have dramas, horrors and many other types of fiction. I look at Sci-fi and see salt and pepper, Sci-fi done right can take a good story of love or pain or anything and turn it into an epic tale. I think bad Science Fiction comes from inexperience and lack of passion. Now, I’m not saying every first time author’s sci-fi novel is bad, that is very far from the truth. What I am saying, though, is with more and more experience come better and better fiction.

Passion is an odd thing, it can make us swoon or make us bury our head into our pillow screaming. My passion for writing has given me many happy moments in life, but sometimes you question your passion. I’ve written several Sci-fi short stories, they’re pretty good too. Not amazing, but they’re OK. Like many writers, I’ve submitted my work for review and publication. Now most writers know what I mean when I say that there is nothing worse than receiving your first rejection. It feels like getting dumped by your significant other as you get hit by a school bus. But this rejection is good as it proves you have passion, true passion, if you persevere though that rejection.

You see what I mean when I said that I have a lot of passions? I started with talking about science-fiction and then moved straight into writing. I’m contemplating stopping right now, but if you’re still reading this, you may still want to read more. So I will continue.

Life isn’t worth living without something you feel passionate for. And don’t ever let anyone tell you that you can’t be passionate for something because it’s “stupid”. Everything sounds stupid if you think about it hard enough, but don’t let that stop you from loving something. If you have a passion for writing, don’t let co-workers, bosses or teachers tell you that you can’t make it. If you love reading Star Wars or Doctor Who novels then read them. Look, I’ll be honest, the last three books I read were Doctor Who. If anyone asked me what I’ve read, that’s what I’ll tell them. Don’t be ashamed of how nerdy Sci-fi makes you look, it’s because you are nerdy. And nerds are awesome!

Now I want to go back to talking about the broadness of Sci-fi, last topic I promise. Sci-fi is so broad that it can really pull people in from different walks of life. Some people like time travel, and only time travel. Others enjoy the “soft” sci-fi alien invasion. Others enjoy hard sci-fi, complicated fiction that one might have to reread to fully grasp. There’s even more than that, there’s space travel, robots and many more. I think it might just be this broadness that really makes me love science fiction.

So, it seems I’m done here. I hope you enjoyed what I had to say, and if not, I’m sorry you’re still reading this. 😛 Lastly, I’d like to thank Kasia James for asking me to do this. This has been a lot of fun and I hope to do more in the future.

Follow Austin at: The Bishop Review

Twitter: @AuthorABender

A Passion for Small Things

Today, the second in the series Guest Posts from fellow bloggers on the subject of Passion, whether literary or personal, which I’ll be posting regularly on a Thursday. If you would like to contribute, please drop me a line at kasia_oz (at) hotmail (dot) com.

Today we have a wonderful post from Sabrina Garie, who a fellow writer and blogger. Excitingly, she has just released a new book ‘Fires of Justice’ in the last few days, which I’m really looking forward to reading – it sounds like a fascinating mix! Please also check out her blog at  Sabrina Garie.

Hope you enjoy Sabrina’s Passion Post.

I am so glad to be visiting with Kasia today. I love the way she thoughtfully weaves science fiction, art, poetry, science, writing and general irreverence into a poignant and unique tapestry that I enjoy visiting again and again.  When she asked me to discuss my passions, it gave me the chance to find a way to talk about a collection of things that ignite a warm glow under my skin that I’ve struggled to articulate.

For the sake of convenience I’m calling it a passion for small things—those heart-stopping moments that arise from a random, usually ordinary, act or occurrence.  Sometimes in the tiniest of actions, the universe and our connection to it and to each other is the most obvious.

What do I mean?  This evening, when I exited the metro and headed to my car, a group of people stood in the rain with cameras, photographing a rainbow.  As I stood and gaped at the rainbow with the water dripping down my neck, I felt part of that group of people, more so than I sometimes feel with my work colleagues, because we shared the beauty of a rainbow.

I hear the universe speak to me in the laugh of a child—because it is pure, honest, authentic and 100 percent in the moment.  It comes from the soul and heart working in tandem.

I feel a camaraderie with the rest of humanity when I see a person who I’ve never met eat. It is a deeper, more profound connection than I can convey.  In a world of junk food, industrialized agriculture, local food movements, diet pills (you can fill this list I’m sure), we forget that breaking bread together is the cement of human social relationships.  So sometimes when I’m a voyeur to someone else’s meal, I am reminded of that essential truth. At times, the poignancy of that truth has brought me to tears.

I touch the night sky when the power goes out and I have to function in the dark.  Building fires, lighting candles, I submerge myself in elements I tend to neglect when the lights are on, the deadlines are unrelenting and the laundry needs to be done.  I love the night sky and even though it comes at the end of every day, I seem to miss it way too much.  When the lights go out, I get to revel in it.

Life is lived in moments. Nurturing a passion for small things reminds me that all moments matter, not just the ones with measurable outcomes or have me jumping out of my skin. So I write to give that passion a home and an outlet; a place to preserve those moments of awe that come from little things.

What touches you?  How do the small things make your life richer?

Sabrina


Sabrina Garie is on a journey to create the most kick-ass heroine in romance fiction. You can meet the first heroine in Fires of Justice at Elloras Cave, Amazon, and Barnes and Nobles.

Passion and Storytelling

I’ve been collecting a few Guest Posts from fellow bloggers on the subject of Passion, whether literary or personal, which I’ll be posting regularly on a Thursday. If you would like to contribute, please drop me a line at kasia_oz (at) hotmail (dot) com.

Today we have a wonderful post from Annie K. Johnson at Chompasuarus Reviews, who both reviews books, interviews authors, and holds great writing competitions! I’d encourage you to check out Chompasaurus Reviews.

Hope you enjoy Annie’s Passion Post.

While I was in college studying statistics and social science, I came to a point where I needed to start taking elective courses to finish the social science end of my studies. I decided on Global Terrorism because it was at a convenient time for my schedule. I didn’t have to come to campus on Fridays, which was just fine by me.

I will never forget my Global Terrorism class. It had turned out to be one of my favorite classes, though it was the least relevant to my degree. My professor was a globally recognized expert on terrorism and had served as an advisor to the United Nations. In fact, about a year after I took that class with him, he left his position as a professor to serve as a terrorism advisor to President Bush.

You wouldn’t have been able to tell just how much political clout this man had by the way he acted. He had something of a Irish accent and a bushy reddish brown beard, which he tugged at as he spoke to the class. His button-up shirt was only partially tucked into his pants with a belt haphazardly thrown through the loops. His first lesson was on how aggression is displayed by social creatures. He explained this by describing fights between dogs.

When a dog is aggressive, it will bare its teeth and growl. The dogs will size each other up to see if they might have a chance at winning the fight. One may back down by behaving in a submissive fashion, or they may decide to fight. During the course of a fight, a dog may thrust its head upward to bare its throat to the attacker as a sign that it has been beaten and cedes the fight. My professor though did not just explain this to us, he acted it out. There he was, in front of sixty students barking, growling, and rolling onto his back with the podium pushed all the way to the side of the lecture floor.

When he spoke, his passion was obvious in his voice and his wild gestures. He talked at length, not just about conflicts that led to terrorist attacks, but on the relationships and the context of these groups, where they had come from, and what made them want to fight. When he spoke about guerrilla warfare, he accompanied his stories with sound effects and vivid imagery, as if he had been right there himself (and, in some cases, he had been). He talked about the Weather Underground, the IRA, and Mao Zedong as if he had known them for years.

Each lecture, he delivered the lesson with such energy and enthusiasm, that whenever you looked around the lecture hall, you would see a full class. People even brought friends to sit in for a lecture. Within a few weeks, there were people standing up in the back and sitting in the aisles, all there to listen to the professor speak. No one smiled or laughed, everyone had their eyes trained on the professor as they listened to him talk. His passion for the subject was what led to his massive knowledge of terrorism and his ability to connect with others when teaching the subject.

This professor, in my opinion, is the prime example of what passion can do for your career and even your life. It’s about being obsessed and excited, totally consumed by something, and unable to feel satiated. Passion is always wanting more. That is perhaps why he was a professor, even as incredibly overqualified as he was. He enjoyed telling these stories and sharing his educated views so much that he needed a forum through which to do it. Passion won’t always lead to fame and riches, but it is the difference between knowing where you want to end up and being happy with it and being directionless. I encourage every writer and budding author to be like my professor – find that one thing that you can’t get enough of and pursue it full force. Plaster it on your walls and allow yourself to jump in with both feet. Not everyone will appreciate your writing, but you will speak to what is true in yourself and those who do connect with your work in the same way will feel just the same.

 

Follow Annie:
Twitter: @Chompasaurus