The Quality of Being Weak — #MFRWauthor

It’s week 13 of the MFRWauthor BlogHop and our prompt is My Greatest Weakness. Last week, I chose to discuss my greatest strength as an author, so I’m staying on topic today, as well.

But what would I say is my greatest weakness?

I think it would be that I don’t move quickly. I don’t mean that I don’t write quickly. I don’t write as quickly as some people I know, but I’m happy with my ability to get words onto the page on a regular basis. I mean that I don’t necessarily see and respond to the latest “thing” quickly.

Beatle BootsI am not a fad-chaser, and that is true of me both as an author and as a person. (Ask me sometime to tell you the the infamous Beatle boot debacle when I was in 4th grade. That cured me forever.)

After many painful efforts in the course of my career to write what someone else wanted me to write, I have discovered that I write best when I write my stories. Not only do I think the writing is better, but I have a lot more fun actually writing the stories when I don’t let outside influences sway me. So while the latest trend might be vampire-themed romantic comedies or Navy SEAL books, you won’t see me jumping on the bandwagon quickly.

This might be a good quality, but it might also be a bad quality. On the one hand, I know what I have to feel about a story before I can get words out of my head and onto the screen. On the other, I miss out on opportunities I see other authors taking advantage of. And while I sometimes feel regret at being so slow to move, I also realize that if I tried to be something other than what I am, my work would suffer.

Calendar 02 smallOr maybe my greatest weakness is my inability to turn in a manuscript to an editor until it feels right to me. Until my blood is flowing smoothly through my veins. I’ll probably never be one of those authors who writes quickly and publishes rapidly. Again, a lot of missed opportunities. But I simply can’t put my name on a project until I know it’s right.

I see writer friends taking on exciting projects, like 50 novellas in a series, each one set in a different state, and I feel a pang of regret. I would love to write something like that, but I know that if I did, it would take me roughly 973 years to complete the project. The only possible way I could possibly make a new novella available every week or even every other week without putting up my first, rough, ugly-dreck draft and asking you to spend money for it–and you will never have access to my first, rough, ugly-dreck draft of anything. It’s just not gonna happen.

bored pexels photoPlus, I would get bored. So maybe that’s my greatest weakness. I get bored easily. I need variety like I need air–in what I read, in what I watch, in what I eat, and in what I write. So the thought of writing 50 books , even short ones, in the same series makes my eyes glaze over and my brain shut down.

I know for a fact that if writing the books bored me, reading them would render you catatonic.

There are more weaknesses I could list, but thank goodness our writing prompt only asks for the greatest of them all, so I can safely conceal the rest of my warts from view.

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5 thoughts on “The Quality of Being Weak — #MFRWauthor

  1. Meka James says:

    You have to be true to yourself. Not being a fad chaser is a good thing. It gets to be a little much when all the new releases in your given genre are the same theme. Readers want something fresh and different and if writing about vampires isn’t your thing, trying to force it won’t feel genuine.

  2. clairejmonroe says:

    I must be in the minority. I personally think slow can be good. Especially when it comes to quality. Like when baking a cake. Faster isn’t better–unless you like gooey centers in the middle of your cake. And writing a book can sometimes feel a lot like baking a cake. There’s definitely something to be said for walking rather than running to the finish line… after all, going a little slower gives you a chance to take in all the scenery and we all know what can happen by taking in the scenery… appreciating life and the work we do. So I say go at your own pace and let the others do what they will (and eat the gooey cake :-).

  3. Ed Hoornaert says:

    I can so identify with this. If I’m interested in a new movie, I wait until it’s on TV — the free channels, not the premium ones. I learn about books and shows ten years after they come out. Now, part of this stems from being rather oblivious, but part is a resistance to what is considered hot.

    For example, I’ve heard that Jane Austen has a new book, Northanger Abbey. I might get around to reading it in a few years. 😉

  4. RobinMichaela says:

    “Sherry Lewis is the award-winning, national bestselling author of more than 30 novels across several genres.” You must be doing something right! Slow and steady wins the race, as the saying goes, lol.

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