A key part of writing is knowing who you are writing for. Many teachers of the craft want you to consider the group that you want to read your material (age, gender, interests). This can help you establish the right tone and craft a believable voice because you are talking to a specific people and not just typing into a blank document. I like to take that to the next level, though, and its why I belief the dedication pages of books are more important than they seem.
Over the summer, I listened to a lot of audio books while working and one of the first big "reads" I tackled were the unabridged recordings of The Lord of the Rings. It began with a forward from Tolkien stating that when he was writing the Two Towers he sent chapters in a serial form to his son who was serving with the RAF in Africa during WWII. A letter is the form of writing with the most direct audience, one person writing to another and Tolkien writing for his son produced some of the most profoundly moving material of the series.
Inspired by this, I've taken up the task lately of writing a short story specifically for my wife, a story intended to please her and using the devices I've seen her enjoy in a books and movies. It is also my intention as I work on that novel I mentioned awhile back (several chapters are done but need to be rewritten) to write for my brother, who has very high standards in books. It will take very good writing and one hell of a story to get and keep his attention.
Until next time, I'm Eric and I'm a science fiction writer starting at the bottom.
I've always kept news of my daily life out of this blog simply because that is not the purpose of this venue. However, to briefly explain my absence, I got married about a month ago and since then have been very busy getting settled in with my new wife, doing everything from moving into a new place to job hunting and everything in between. As the dust clears and I begin to pursue my writing again, I plan on using this blog as I had in the past, as a way to journal my progress and motivate myself to write write write! I mean, what will my readers think if I've been slacking off?
With that said, an e-mail was sent to me on the day before my wedding that I didn't read for more than a week because of that whole honeymoon thing. It said, simply, this:
Your story has been accepted for web publication by 365 Tomorrows. It will appear on the www.365tomorrows.com front page and will be archived within the site under the name you submitted with it. Thank you for your submission, and we hope that you contribute to 365 again in the future.
So, I'm published. Ta-da! If you want to read my story, go to 365tomorrows.com, click on the Archives button and scroll down to October 4th (getting close to the bottom of the first page of the archives now). Its called "Why I Hate the Colonists." Now, what does this mean for me? Besides a much needed morale boost and the chance to say on cover letters that my fiction has been featured somewhere, not much. I hope to use this a stepping stone to greater things (paying things). However, I am proud. Very damn proud. I will continue to blog as "Eric: Unpublished" until I'm payed for my writing, though I don't really say I haven't been published anymore. With nonfiction featured in several regional magazines and now a fiction story online, I feel like this writing thing is starting to get some legs beneath it.
Until next time kids, I'm Eric.