In the soft stillness of the early morning I glared at the inoffensive radio as I resolved not to listen to whatever ‘those idiots’ are up to ( ever since Brexit I have had a much wider category of Those Idiots). I then turned my attention to firstly the kettle jug, and then the laptop; making sure I had the right roles adjudicated to each it was time to ponder on yesterday as the cereal went suitably soggy.
Had I been too apocalyptic and polemic in my post on BAD writing. Had the results caused many a writer to feel that they were Less Than The Dust Beneath Thy Chariot Wheel (Adela Florence Nicolson wrote under the pseudonym Laurence Hope); should not matters be re-addressed and clarified?
I feel they should (Pauses to refer to notes, finds he is looking at yesterday’s shopping list. The way this week has been going, is not surprised. Carries on anyhow)
The position as I see it must be considered thus, in relation to the variety of motivations for writing, the approaches, the styles and of course the underlying thematic influences prevalent in Society in general contemporaneous with the author’s perceptions (with that off-the-cuff piece feels that he has rescued the business of having lost his notes and nurtures the return of his confidence)
In this we can view three broad categories of writers who have not yet reached that ever evasive term of ‘Successful’. However before progressing it is important to bear in mind we are not addressing the question of a person’s ability to write, but their approach to becoming published.
Thus let us separate out these other circumstances, which do not count as BAD
If you have decided to embark upon the venture of writing, of whatever sort but have no idea as to how you are to go about transferring your words on paper or computer file to book, article, short story and so forth by definition you are inexperienced. This is a simple statement and not a judgement. A whole wide and wonderful world awaits you and on Word Press there are myriad of helpful and knowledgeable bloggers. I am not one of those, my words are those of caution and bad example. You should as I have written often be taking notes of my posts on writing and doing the opposite.
Are you following blogs of those folk who have been published and sold books, articles, short stories or poems (single of collections)? Are you following their advice? Are you downloading some of those aids to writing? Are you doing all that should be done as per the advice?
And still getting rejections? Yet not submitting to the urge to give up the whole thing?
Then you are indeed Heroic! No matter how wretched you may feel. Or wonder if there is something inherently wrong with you for wanting to carry on. This is not so! It is not your fault you keep encountering editors who are not in tune with your style. You cannot be held responsible for their short comings. As long as you are following the advice given out, then at some stage all will be well.
You may wish to self-publish, if you do so then again there is much good advice out in the WP community, again you will not find any of it here. Other than to ignore those ‘precious’ snobbish professionals who decry self-publishing; they are simply given vent to their fears that folk will ditch their self-referential and pretentious stuff and seek out more genuine work.
Let Edison’s wise words be your standard: ‘I have not failed, I have merely found 10,000 ways which do not work’.
Nourish your urge to write, let no one dare to suggest you stop. You owe this to yourself and to the world.
BAD Writers :
Three days ago, I embarked on writing this part, then found I was obliged to travel a reflective, nay, even existentialist path in considering just would qualify as BAD, and even what is ….’BAD’-
(You know the sort of thing, you come across a concept and you go Wiki-ing, then you find the concept is sub-divided into legion of categories and you get lost in the Wik-tunnels but escape before you go dizzy and fall over. Then having gleaned a smidge of knowledge you happen to mention it en passant on some social site causing a fully signed up member of the Huff ‘N Puff Lodge to tell you, you are wrong with all the long-winded turgid self-important pomposity their narrow little mind can manage)
Anyway, after this period of reflection and having carefully categorised various concepts of BAD while endeavoring not to sound denigrating or accusatory, I found I added approx 2,000 extra words to this post. This could have been acceptable had not the various explanations have gone into convolutions and abstractions which would serve no purpose other than project exercises for trainee editors and proof-readers and the type of fodder for that sort of pedant who trawls the Internet for new reasons to be outraged and demonstrate their inconsequential somethingorotherness.
Or writers who are fascinated by weird things.
So I considered the following:
There is nothing to be gained by throwing away your hours of toil, because you did not have someone proof read your work OR if you could not afford that did not check you work with painstaking thoroughness. And if you do self -publish in such a way you will only serve that ghastly crew of professionals who seek out such errors and squawk with indecent shrillness as if one careless writer is representative of the whole.
Whereas there is much to be said for exploding upon the world with enthusiasm and determination, if you’ve not actually given fayre (sic) warning of what is one its way, then no one will notice you amongst all the exploding folk. Of course, there is nothing with being modest and not wishing to make a fuss over your work, you may be quite content to quietly ease it out into the world, and you never know who might notice; thus embrace your inner modesty.
To discover there are so many ways to enhance your profile and hone the work into publishable and sellable material
EG: I cite two examples of You-Should-Visit-These
Rachael Ritchley https://wordpress.com/read/feeds/34052196
Yecheilyah Ysrayl https://thepbsblog.com
Both ladies (That’s a British compliment by the way) work hard at presentation, variety and offer invaluable advice for anyone starting out, floundering a bit, or very confused by the whole business.
And ‘Hey! That’s useful, I really should do that….and I don’t’ is really the essence of being BAD
Ergo ( or Disce aut discede, if you prefer) I am where I am today.
And can only deduce I must be displaying sloppiness.
But changing the blog to Heroically Sloppy Writer just looks……… odd
Therefore at this stage, I cease this post and leave you to draw your own lessons and conclusion, but beg you to continue with your writing lest we be subsumed in The pretentious, The formulaic, and The ‘wow that last tax-bill really stung, I’d better rattle off something quick’
Don’t be sloppy.