Sunday, July 01, 2012

Writing Fiction vs. Blogging: Completely Different

I'm (casually) trying to learn storycraft and fiction writing, and I'm completely fascinated how different writing fiction is vs. blogging.  The philosophical approaches are vastly different in a way.  A blogger writes down their thoughs quite soon after they think of them and pretty soon after that publishes them.  A fiction writer on the other hand, will spend weeks, months, years working out a story and that story may not ever get printed if they can't find a publisher.  Plus they don't breathe a word about it for fear that someone else will print the idea first, and also publishers often won't touch something that has been printed before even if it's just the internet.

This secrecy drives blogger types like me nuts.  As I work out my ideas I'd love to show the process publicly as I think that would be extremely cool.  The problem is that I don't have a lot of ideas in the fiction realm and, unlike blogging, they're kind of hard to come up with.  As a result, if I were to do this I would have to come up with a throwaway example, or one that is just given away on the web as a way to show what I can do. 

All this while my really cool idea just sits there begging to be free.  Argh.


Elf said...

Did I ever direct you here? Can't guarantee you'll like the story, but the blog posts are exactly the sorts of things that you're asking for.

BTW, the reasons that a lot of writers don't want to talk about their unsold stories likely has much less to do with someone stealing the idea than (a) losing possible income because publishers might consider it to be already published (as you note), and/or (b) once something is "in print", even if it's in a blog, it takes on a life of its own, and if you haven't actually sold it yet, you might want to be revising and hashing it out in your own head without feeling like other people's fingers are in it (your mom's, your nonwriter friends, random strangers...).

Elf said...

P.S. It's hard to imagine not having ideas coming out of one's ears. Putting them into a story, with characters and plot, is the challenging part. Do you mean that you have a complete story and are trying to figure out how to write it?

Ellen said...

Stories that fit well into a narrative story just don't come nearly as easy to me as a character sketch or dialog bits. I love being in traffic sometimes as it's easy to make up stories about people in their cars, but coming up with a structure and world that they fit into and the challenges they face is a whole diffent matter.