The Drama Queen
Okay, so I’ll admit it – I write drama. Not fast paced action filled fantasy novels like I wish I could, but fairly drawn out dramatization of ideas that my brain cells breed. Why do I feel the need to make this declaration? Well, I’m about a two-thirds of the way through writing my paranormal novella, Aversion (did I mention it’s going to be part of a series), and I’ve been trying to bear in mind some of the comments readers have made when reviewing my other works. Most of the reviews have been positive and have enlightened me on readers’ expectations and even some aspects of the craft of writing, however there are some things I know I can’t or won’t change about my style of writing because they are what makes my work original/mine (enough said about that). Anyway, one recurring point that I thought I could try to tackle was “pace”. Apparently I could do with speeding things up a bit, throw in a few more disasters for the protagonist to struggle through, provide more conflict, that kind of thing. Fairly easy to attempt, right?
Wrong! The more I type and the more I think of ways to incorporate these elements into the novella, the more I realise that this is a false expectation for me. I write slow paced stuff, simple. And maybe I should accept that there is nothing wrong with that. I write about how people feel, how they react to things that happen to them. How these things slowly (or rapidly) change their perspective of life. Yadidadida. And oh yes, my characters internalize things and brood a lot. I don’t know what that says about me (probably a lot) but some readers have been able to connect with this style of writing and I hope that some more will be able to do so too in future.
The problem is that trying to listen to what everyone has to say doesn’t really work but it is not easy to ignore. I’m going to have to find a way to tune out what doesn’t work for me and leave that for another writer to achieve for another readership. I’ve read many award-winning books that felt like they went on for ages and were not my cup of tea at all but the writing clearly worked for a large appreciative population. And it’s not just award-winning brainiac books. When I read the Hunger Games (after all the media rave and the movie), I realised I would never like Katniss as a character or even the pace of the three novels in most places but I wanted to keep reading the series. I needed to find out what happened to her and Peeta. Even the Harry Potter books dragged a lot of times but I kept reading because I wanted to know how the books ended. I guess what I’m trying to say is that I hope I can achieve that kind of appeal with my work, get people wrapped up in a world I have created and keep them wanting more. Fast pace or slow pace, drama or action, it almost doesn’t matter as long as I can get my readers to a satisfactory end – then maybe I’d know I’ve done something right.