Today is both #IWSG day and day six of #NaBloPoMo!

Let’s combine the blog hops today, shall we?

IWSG badgeThis post is part of the Insecure Writer’s Support Group blog hop. The first Wednesday of every month is Insecure Writer’s Support Group day. Post your thoughts on your own blog. Talk about your doubts and the fears you have conquered. Discuss your struggles and triumphs. Offer a word of encouragement for others who are struggling. The awesome co-hosts for the the May 6 posting of the IWSG will be Eva Solar, Melanie Schulz, Lisa-Buie Collard, and Stephen Tremp!

 

NaBloPoMo_PHOTO

During the month of May I’m doing the NaBloPoMo challenge–blogging every day of the month on the theme of photos.

Today’s prompt: How often are you in your photographs?
Photo: Your Love

I thought about how I could combine today’s posts. How often am I in my photographs? Constantly! I love having my picture taken and having pictures taken of what I’m doing. And from the writing perspective, how often am *I* in my photographs–that is, my books? How much of myself is in each one, and how would that make me insecure, exactly? Let me explain.

All of us have heard the phrase “write what you know.” Some people live by it and some people think it’s ridiculous. After all, how would any spy novels or murder mysteries get written if only spies and detectives wrote these novels? Or historicals, or sci-fi? Do you have to live on an alien planet or travel back in time to write these things? Of course not. You do research and use your imagination. I interpret ‘write what you know’ as ‘write what you’re enthusiastic about and can put the time and dedication into.’

But putting yourself into your work can make you feel insecure in two opposite ways:

– If you put too much of your passion and yourself into something, and people don’t like it, what then? Does that mean they don’t like you? Does it mean you should change genres? It’s scary to put your heart and soul into something and put it on display for other people.

Or

– What if you branch out and research something you don’t ‘know’ and you don’t write it well enough, or correctly and honestly? Will people who have experienced the subject call you a phony? What if you get laughed at? What if they can tell you’re just an intruder in their sandbox?

Writing is a lot of nail biting and hoping that your work resonates with someone, or they at least don’t mock you. Putting yourself into your work–writing what you know–is even more nerve wracking. Just like taking a picture of yourself, you hope somebody hits that ‘like’ button.

My love is writing. This was my three book contract from Kensington--yes, I love being in the pictures I take!
My love is writing. This is my three book contract from Kensington–yes, I love being in the pictures I take!

23 thoughts on “Today is both #IWSG day and day six of #NaBloPoMo!

  1. I also think that writing what you know is your emotions, actions and reactions. You don’t have to be an alien to write one. You need to know how to create one, give it character, actions and feelings. Imagine. Also, you can research. And, you’re right. If all the stories out there written about and from the perspective of criminals, we’d all be in trouble!
    Play off the Page

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    1. Very good point! Creating characters is all about knowing yourself as a character, I guess you’d say. Creating a human means knowing how humans work.

      Thanks for stopping by!

      Like

  2. I think it’s actually brave to lay heart and soul bare when we write and put it out for the world to see and comment on. So why do we do this? Most of us can’t be that confident (I know that I’m not) that they don’t care what people say. Is it that people feel compelled to write regardless of the way that it is received?

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    1. Maybe that’s it. I know I feel compelled to write. Even when it scares me, I have to do it. But we’d never have anything great I guess, if no one ever took the chance.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. I never seem to be in any pictures because I’m always taking them and I am awful at selfies. Need to work on that. I love love love how you tied both posts together. So creative!

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    1. Thank you! I’m enjoying the challenge!

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  4. Good luck with your NaBloPoMo challenge. I’ve just completed NaPoWriMo and it was grueling (just too much going on). But I wish you the best with your theme for this year’s challenge. Also, my poetry college professor always stressed to out class, to not just rely on what you know. But to also write what we don’t know. He’d say it so often it became his mantra.

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    1. Thank you! I’m having fun with it so far. And your college professor sounds like a wise man!

      Thanks for stopping by!

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Glad someone likes having a picture taken!
    Science fiction and fantasy are my passion, but I am not in the books I write. Those characters are beyond where I would go.

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    1. I didn’t used to, but now I love it! I guess I care less and less as I age. LOL

      That’s okay–at least you still get to explore those things that are your passion. Thanks for stopping by!

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  6. At first, I wrote what I knew. Then I discovered how much fun it is to write sci-fi romance. Big problem. Science is not my forte. I really enjoy learning about space travel and planets (real & make-believe).

    Best wishes,
    Diane IWSG #108

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    1. Oooh, that’s awesome! I’m not a big sci-fi fan myself but I never considered how much you’d need to research about space–which I do love learning about!

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  7. I’ve sort of taken “write what you know” as an excuse to go learn new things. Thanks to research, I now know a lot of fairly random but interesting stuff.

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    1. Me too! I love doing research and learning new things. One of the best parts of being a writer!

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  8. Hi, Megan! I think it’s more like ‘write what you know then make sure that you’ll do a research for the rest of the things that you don’t know.’ 🙂

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    1. Absolutely, I agree! Thanks for stopping by!

      Like

      1. You’re welcome, Megan. 🙂

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  9. Stephanie Scott May 6, 2015 — 10:39 AM

    I have to laugh at the NaBloPoMo … did I get it right? I keep saying it wrong.

    Even if you know something, I find that when writing about it, you still have to research to get details right.

    Like

    1. LOL it’s short for ‘National Blog Post Month.’ And you’re absolutely right–even the things I think I know everything about, once I start writing them, I don’t.

      Thanks for stopping by!

      Like

  10. one author once said that’s why she writes memoirs… (write what you know… 😉 minimal research needed 😉 )

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    1. LOL that’s a great idea! Thanks for stopping by!

      Liked by 1 person

  11. Maybe the term should be, use what you know, because we can’t know everything. 🙂

    Here’s my link if you’d like to drop by 🙂

    Anna from Elements of Writing

    Like

    1. Or maybe ‘learn something new if you don’t know it.’ Thanks for stopping by!

      Liked by 1 person

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