You know that saying, “How do you expect people to love you when you don’t love yourself?” Or I don’t know, something along those lines, though perhaps not quite so harsh, as I’m sure I’ve seen that saying on several get-well sites.
Well, that’s how I’m feeling about my own characters. I have talked about this before in this other post. Before that, I also mentioned being bored of my own story. I have taken a break from my story for several weeks, and I am now gearing up for next month’s Camp NaNoWriMo. I have dusted off my notes, and once again, refactored the plot. I spruced up the characters. I have read and reviewed three writing books.
Here’s the thing. I don’t think the problem is with the concept of my characters or the concept of my story. I think the problem is with me, the writer. Let me clarify what I mean about that. When I think of my story, I get very excited… but only if I am thinking about it from the point of view of a reader. The concept I have come up with is something I have wanted to read for a long, long time and the main reason I decided to write this story is because I am done waiting for the market to cater it to me. A lot of the plot points I constructed for my story are ones I would love to read about. Same with the characters; I created my characters, if not similar to the characters I love from other books, at least to possess qualities that I know I would like as a reader.
And this is the problem. I’m more interested in reading my story than I am in writing it.
The writing books don’t help at all in this regard. All of the writing books I’ve read try to instruct writers in how they can make their story enjoyable for their readers. However, none of them have any advice for how authors can enjoy writing their own stories. And I suppose that’s my main concern. Is it possible for readers to enjoy what I write, when me, the writer, doesn’t enjoy what I’m writing? From the quotation at the beginning, it seems unlikely.
I haven’t figured out yet how to solve this particular writing problem, since like I said most writing books out there guide writers on how to please their readers, rather than to make the task of writing enjoyable. If anyone out there knows of writing books that does the latter, I’d be very pleased to take recommendations!