Lately, I have had friends and online writing communities tell me that I should write a sequel to my current novel, as I did leave the story open to a possible sequel with many new adventures that could spin-off from where the story ended. I have gone back and forth on this only because I think about movies I’ve seen and isn’t the first movie always the best? Is it the same for books? I wonder what other writers/authors think of this.
I’ve also been exploring writing a non-fiction book based on my personal past experience of living with a partner that was a narcissistic sociopath. There’s not much out there on this subject and I’ve been told I should write my story as it may help others who might be trying to understand what they are fully going through.
Fiction or Non-Fiction
I feel like my mind is reliving the scene from Ferris Bueller’s Day off. The part where the teacher calls out Ferris’ name in the classroom. Anyone? Anyone? Class? Or, going through the class roster on who’s in attendance….Bueller? Bueller? Bueller? Such a classic movie for any of us that grew up in the ’80s.
I feel this way about writing Fiction or Non-Fiction at the moment. Fiction? Fiction? Non-Fiction? Non-fiction? Or throwing a curveball in the mix, and maybe just writing both? Do I dare?
Using A Different Pen Name
Writers don’t really speak of this very often, which is why I wanted to touch on this. Should you use a different pen name if you’re writing fiction and non-fiction? For example, if I write a fantasy romance novel under my name and then a self-help, non-fiction book, should I use a different pen name? I believe this all comes down to personal preference and how you want to be perceived as an author. This might be ideal for me, as a pen name under a romance genre and using the same pen name on a personal life story might be confusing to some. It may be better to keep these under a separate author name, but again, it comes down to personal preference for the writer.
Conquering Your Fear of Writing
FEAR. That dreaded word in the writing world. It can sneak up on you when you least expect it to. One moment, you’re thinking how great your story is and the next, fear creeps in, and you’re wondering if anyone will read it. That voice in your head starts to take over. Will people like it? What made me think I can do this?
Actually, the biggest fear to overcome is the fear of just starting. I call it writers fear. I had to push through it when I first started. What do writers do? They write. In some ways, it’s like retraining your brain that allows you to push past any fears that may start to manifest. Be determined to finish, no matter what obstacles get in your way. I had to. Just keep writing. Nothing was going to stop me from getting my story out into the world. My determination was strong, and I’m grateful for that.
Writing in a Journal
I found it helpful to take notes down in a journal when I thought of something that may not have made sense at the time. I knew I could always come back to it later and use it in my story. Actually, this is how the title of my Novel, “The Unforgotten World of Ava” came to light. I was lying in bed one night and jotted it down in my journal. That was it. I never went back to change the title. I knew that’s what it had to be.
The main character, Ava, was created in the same fashion. Having notes to reflect back on is extremely important. Our minds work in mysterious ways and things come to us unexpectedly at times, then we tend to forget what we might have thought of, which is why I like to write down anything that comes to me. It just may be useful in a future chapter or even in another book.
The best advice I received from others was, just keep writing. I felt it was important to pass this message along to others who may have “writers fear” that could be holding them back from just starting. Take notes in a journal and over time, go back and look at what was written. You may find that you have created your characters, a title and a storyline that’s there for you to begin your writing journey.
Is it fiction you desire to write? There is tremendous freedom in being able to write about anything, even soaring to another world or universe and creating characters that define that world. Do they possess magical powers or are they even human? Anything is possible in fiction writing. You may be surprised how the words just flow onto the page.
Maybe you have been thinking about writing your own life story or possibly wanting to help others with your knowledge and experience. I read somewhere that the artist writes what they want to write and is inspired by what they love. What do you love? If you just keep writing, you may find your answer.