Monday, January 27, 2014

Beds and bed stands!

 Wherein Jack Complains.

 When someone tells me they want to be an Author my first reaction is to shout, "NOOOOOOOOOOOO!" in my best Luke Skywalker imitation. Why? Do I think being an Author is that terrible? Sometimes...yes. (All you who wish to be Authors, don't run off because I said that. Keep reading.)

 When someone finds a book they like they know there is a risk in reading it. We've had enough books in the world that this is just kind of expected. Not everything ends happy, and even when it does, not all the characters are happy in the end. (Frodo). So, reading a book and really liking it can hurt. But it is always worth it, right? Millions still read The Lord of the Rings even with the bitter sweet ending. We know characters die sometimes, we know endings can be sad. We might not like them, but we know it is a possibility. We don't need a warning.

 Not so with writing.

 As a reader, we are under the assumption Authors enjoy being mean. They sit down at their desk and go, "What can I do today to make the readers sob over this character they love?" That is how Authors are viewed. (Don't deny it. I'm a reader too, I've been there.)

 But this is not the case.

 Not all Authors are evil just to be evil. (Some are. We know it. You need a list? Okay. Moffat - he's admitted to it. Rick Rodrian - another who admitted. Lemony Snicket - don't try and defend him.) Then you have those who don't admit it but you're pretty sure they get some kind of evil joy out of it. Then you have those who love happy endings but never get them. And these are the Authors who should be given a warning manual before they begin. But, since there hasn't been one put together, I am going to do it for you. I have had lots of experience, I've seen all of those chimerical on TV about pills that might help you if they don't kill you first.

 Is your life boring? Do you dream of adventure? Have you ever wished to fight dragons, fly in an airship, battle pirates, or go on a quest? Then the life of an Author is for you!

 "I never knew what I was missing in life until I became an Author. Every day things have become exciting adventures. A trip to the store for bananas is now a quest to find the missing crown of King Arthur. Becoming an Author has changed my life!" *Show beaming, glasses wearing geek who is sitting in a sunny living room typing on a computer.*

 *In a deep, manly, whispery voice while smiling writers flash across the screen, all sitting in the sun, some outside, some in coffee shoppes.* Being an Author is not for everyone. If you have a wide emotion range or are easily over come by emotions this job might not be meant for you. Please consult your friends or family if you experience days of crying, find yourself laughing in the corner alone, and loose all desire to go outside. Other side effects may include depression, insanity, desiring to stab people with your pencil, incriminating searches showing up on your computer, the urge to dress in Middle Ages garb and walk around with a sword, being arrested for asking your friends the best way to torture someone, forgetting what the sun looks like, mumbling to yourself and coughing, "Gollum, Gollum," and in extreme cases death by sorrow when your characters die on you.

 *Flash back to the happy Author in the living room.* Being an Author is the best thing that has ever happened to me! *Goes back to happy typing.*

 *Flash out to an image of a book.* Become an Author today!

 I had one of these happen to me today, one of these moments when I wish I had rethought becoming an Author before I was in this deep. I won't talk about him yet because he gets an introduction like the others, but he's from The Broken Blade series. And he has this whole set up planned that I didn't plan and he's attempting to have me in tears by the end of the series.

  Quote is from Narnia, Prince Caspian.




  1. There does need to be a warning. If we only knew what we were getting into. Crap, we'd probably still do it anyway...

  2. This would be hilarious if it weren't so true.

  3. Brilliant! And yet, with all the difficulties, both emotional and social, of living in another world half the time, I would never want to not be an author.

    1. Not want to be, that is. Please excuse the split infinitive.

  4. Oh, this is so accurate. Being an author is so emotionally taxing and yet I simply couldn't be anything else!

  5. This is so hilarious! I love the part in the side effects where it mentions mumbling and coughing "Gollum, Gollum." :)

  6. Oh my word, Jack, you crack me up! This is too perfect! But also heart-stabbingly truthful. Writing is such an emotional job! I fear I am one of those people who forgot what the sun looks like and mumbles "Gollum, Gollum," in dark corners.

    I'm so sorry you have a characters threatening to put you in tears. Just remember WHY you write and keep pushing on. We can get through this!

  7. Hilarious, and so true! My older sister forces me to take my writing outside, because she worries I don't get enough sunshine time. ;) And oh yes. I almost think Moffat is sadistic. Do you know how many times he's made me cry??

  8. Beds and Bedstands - Trumpkin from Prince Caspian - best dwarf ever! (Sorry Kili and Fili).
    I loved, loved, loved this post. I might even print it out and post it on my writing board. That warning made me laugh, grin, and nod my head. Yes, I've been that person snickering over my journal in a public place, or with tears in my eyes, and yes, I've had the urge to walk around with my fencing sabre, just to get the feel of what carrying a weapon around would be like . . . aah. And all the other stuff too. :)


    I'm sorry. That's my favorite Star Wars quote (other than Princess Leia's... "Would somebody get this big walking carpet out of my way?" and "Why you stuck-up, half-witted, scruffy-looking... nerf-herder!" I always thought it was nerve-hurter... but I've been proven wrong by online quotes). I just had to quote it back to you.

    Anyway... I'm more on the Moffat-side, I think. I laugh maliciously when I cause my characters pain. Which actually doesn't happen as often as my book makes it seem like...

    Gollum, gollum.

  10. I'm the emotional kind who cries and apologises the whole time I'm writing horrible things my characters have to go through...

  11. So, so, so true. For instance, a couple of months ago when I was crying quietly into my coffee at Starkbucks, coming to grips with the fact that a very minor but endearing character in my novel had just died with absolutely no warning to me or anyone else. How could he do that to meeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee? Still trying to figure out a way to rewrite it so he's just wounded.


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