Wednesday, March 2, 2022

ISWG: Trying New Things

Photo by Anna Sullivan on Unsplash

My husband and I have a running joke about what he orders when we go out to eat. I always try something new. He always orders the same thing—no matter the restaurant. He says, “At least I won’t be disappointed.”

To tell the truth, I’ve had some ups and downs with my orders—and with my writing. I like to try new things, whether it’s in food or in life.

To date, although I generally write for children and teens, I have tried nearly every genre within that age range (mystery, fantasy, historical, contemporary, etc.). I have written nonfiction and fiction. I have written short stories and novels.

Recently, I tried my hand at something outside my comfort zone.  I wrote a short story for adults with a very unusual POV. It is also a little more humorous than what I normally write.

My critique partner said, “I can’t believe you wrote this.”

Of course, when you’re an insecure writer, you can even obsess about a compliment. So of course, I started wondering, why do I write all over the place? Why can’t I stick with one genre? I see all this marketing advice about building your brand, being known as the writer who writes X, Y, or Z. Well, I’ll never be able to do that.

My husband came to the rescue: “Think about it this way:  you’re versatile.”

Have I been scared to write a scene or a story? Honestly, I’m scared to write just about everything I write. It’s different. People won’t like me if I write this. I don’t know enough about X. And more recently, with the YA project I’m working on, strangely enough, some of what I’ve written has come true. Does that happen to other scifi/futuristic writers? Have to say I’m new to that genre too.

But we have to keep writing. Like trying a different item on the menu at each restaurant, I can’t say that everything I write works out. But I always learn something from every experience.

And that’s what matters, right?

Have you ever been conflicted about writing a story or adding a scene to a story? How did you decide to write it or not? 

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