Monday, February 2, 2009

On Being a Great Writer

“If you want to be a great writer and you have a choice between being brilliant and lazy or being a little clueless but motivated, choose the latter.” – Alexander Steele in Gotham Writers' Workshop Writing Fiction: the practical guide from New York's acclaimed creative writing school.
If the degree of cluelessness is any indication, some days I feel like I’m well on my way to being a great writer. This happens with my own stories when I reach a point where I have no idea what needs to occur next. It happens when I read someone else’s work that's been published in a respected magazine, and I can’t figure out what makes it a good story. It happened last week in an online writing class I’m taking when I experienced "old timer's" disease trying to figure out how the included writing example fit the topic. Maybe that's part of what makes writing so difficult. One day I feel like I could be the next Stephen King or Robert B. Parker. Then, I sit down to write and wonder if I ever composed a complete sentence that made sense.

1 comment:

Loren Christie said...

Jim,
This is encouraging since I am clueless as well. :>