“But I am learning that perfection isn’t what matters. In fact, it’s the very thing that can destroy you if you let it.” -Emily Giffin
“If a story is in you, it has got to come out.” -William Faulkner
There’s currently an open debate about NaNoWriMo (aka National Novel Writing Month). Click on the image below to read about it:
There’s one post live discussing and debating about NaNoWriMo by Katherine Karch!
Want to add your opinion to this debate? Follow the instruction above and we look forward to reading about it!
Take part in a debate and voice your opinion as a writer!
Click on link below to enter your post:
Post your post’s link in the comment section below (same rule applies-one with the most likes, wins).
Over at Facebook, I moderate a session every Thursday with WE PAW Bloggers called “Thursday Talk Shop.” This week we’re looking at a particular quote by a French philosopher, author, and journalist, Albert Camus:
“The purpose of a writer is to keep civilization from destroying itself.”
These are the questions I posed to the group:
Do you agree with this?
What do you think he meant by this?
How does a writer do this? I mean, wow, this is heavy! Can you name ways how a writer can save civilization?
This goes to show the kind of power behind the “written” word. Can you name writers who in your mind changed the course of history?
Feel free to participate!
I read an article recently that got me thinking about creativity and its role in mental illness (or vice versa): Creativity and mental illness share genetic markers on Genetic Literacy Project.
“Scientists in Iceland report that genetic factors that raise the risk of bipolar disorder and schizophrenia are found more often in people in creative professions.”
Hmm, this statement wasn’t anything I did NOT know; however…
“Kari Stefansson, founder and CEO of deCODE, a genetics company based in Reykjavik, said the findings, described in the journal Nature Neuroscience, point to a common biology for some mental disorders and creativity. ‘To be creative, you have to think differently,’ he told the Guardian. ‘And when we are different, we have a tendency to be labelled strange, crazy and even insane.’”
Wait, there’s more…
“Stefansson believes that scores of genes increase the risk of schizophrenia and bipolar disorder. These may alter the ways in which many people think, but in most people do nothing very harmful. But for 1% of the population, genetic factors, life experiences and other influences can culminate in problems, and a diagnosis of mental illness.”
Not only do we, as creatives, think differently I believe we also feel differently. And we just don’t look (or feel) at the surface, we dig deep.
We dare to.
It’s okay if we’re viewed as being different.
We’re used to being alone, standing in a room full of strangers (even family members tend to be viewed as strangers at times).
But do all of these make us mentally ill?
We tend to delve so deeply into our minds that we start to see things (and people) that may or may not be there.
We talk to our characters that no one else can hear.
Our minds…our imagination are our greatest weapons.
And our downfall.
All because “normal” people do not understand us.
But does that make us mentally ill?
This past week, I put out a poll on various social media sites asking writers what they considered was the most important element of any given story. Not surprisingly, there seems to be a split between the Character element and the Plot element as evident below:
“I voted for Character, but beyond that, the narrative voice. There are some voices, like those from Flannery O’Connor, Sue Monk Kid, and even Anne Lamott, that I’ll listen to even if I’m not interested, per se, in the topic. It’s like wearing a warm flannel shirt that feels like home.” –tomadaonline
“Compelling characters move the plot, make settings more than a travelogue, give themes meaning w/which readers can identify.” –We PAW Bloggers
“Has to be plot. You can have compelling characters, intricate settings… but if they’re doing bugger all it’s a bad story!” –The Written Ward
What about you? Would you like to add your input to this debate? Do you think Character is more important to a story than the Plot? Or, perhaps the genre a story is in has a hand in determining which element would be the driving force? If you’re interested on continuing or even expanding on this debate, how about writing a guest post? Let me know via the Contact page!