Writing Your Story
“Write your story as it needs to be written. Write it honestly, and tell it as best you can. I’m not sure that there are any other rules. Not ones that matter.” ~ Neil Gaiman
I borrowed this quote for today’s post. We all have a story (stories) to tell. Many of us need to tell this/these stories, especially those of us who consider ourselves writers. Although we can tell stories in other mediums, for this post we will focus on writers.
Writers, especially in the beginning, tend to experiment with ways of telling the stories locked inside them. They have to find their own voice before they can truly share their inmost parts. While imitation is flattering, it does not really help us find ourselves. It merely helps us find who we are not!
The thing is that writers tend to have too many rules. Grammar rules, their own rules, the rules they perceive from others, etc. fill us with dread as we face the story. We want to do it right, but fear we will do it so wrong! Our perfectionism, list of rules, and fear keep us from telling our story or at least help us to procrastinate the telling.
Mr. Gaiman reminds us that telling the story is more important than how we tell it. We can always edit later, but we must get the story down first. The only rules you need are:
1) Write it honestly. and
2) Write it the best you can.
I think I can handle those two rules. How about you? Do you have a story to tell? Do you have many stories to tell? Have you told them? Are you making it harder than it needs to be?
In telling stories about my adventures lately with my dad and more, I have begun to realize I have stories to tell and I need to tell them. Whether Gram, Imma, or both have a hand in the process, it needs to happen. Will I take my own advice? Tune in later to see.
- Neil Gaiman’s commencement speech (fensalirfiber.wordpress.com)