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Paul Day Paul Day
Recommendations: 14

A Multitude of Opposing Voices


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I have been a long time member of several popular online writing sites. I joined my first one several years ago and at last count I have over a thousand separate pieces of writing. On each piece I have received on average 3 comments, most of which has just pointed out the obvious, a small percentage has been negative and a small few have been truthfully helpful.


I always listen to advice or feedback or a critique I believe has been given with a view to helping me hone my craft. I have been inspired by the writing of others and experimented with a broad range of writing styles.


Eventually, I found my niche, narrative rhyming verse. I wrote my first children's story in verse way back in 2008. It was called, The Misadventures of Red Bear. I have since created my first published version of that story.


Sometimes, though, feedback can be confusing, misleading, impossible to comprehend, contradictory and 10 people will have 10 vastly differing views on what constitutes effective narrative.


Which brings me to my point. At what time do we say to ourselves as writers, "Enough already! I know how to do this. I have the experience, the knowledge, I have done the hard yards. My work is far from perfect, but I need to back myself and just do it!"


Anyone can string a series of words into a sentence, join sentences together to make a paragraph, connect paragraphs together to make a subject, make that subject into a story, which ultimately, if enough paragraphs and pages and chapters are neatly woven together, a book is formed. However, not everyone is at the same place, at the same level. Not everyone has the ability to craft a meaningful, engaging story with a powerful central message which causes readers to react with horror, tears, laughter or disgust (some times all at the same time).


Everyone is different and every critique is different. In the end, as authors setting out on the road of publication, we owe it to ourselves to put it together, stop listening too much to the multitude of opposing voices and just go for it.


Now is the time to publish. So write that book. Proof it thoroughly. Have someone you trust to speak the truth go over it and find the things you have missed. Redraft it. Come up with an intelligent title which encapsulates what your central theme is. Write meaningful chapter headings, be inventive. Capture the imagination of your readers. Do not worry about length. Your novel is ready when all the separate components come together to bring revelation.


E L James (Author of 50 Shades of Grey) has proven that you don't necessarily have to write perfectly to find an audience. You just have to have the right story, for the right time, for the right readers.


My advice to all those "aspiring authors"? Stop aspiring and start producing. You may not make any money, but nothing beats the feeling you get when you hold in your hands, the fruit of your own work in the form of a book, with a shiny new cover. A book you lovingly crafted with your own unique imagination.


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