I work in a publishing house. I graduated in Journalism, but my passion for books has always been much stronger than my passion for, well, journalism, so in the end I never quite practiced it. During my time there, to get some extra money, I worked in a second-hand bookshop... the salary was ridiculously low, and often late, but my sheer love for books kept me there for more than an year.
Anyway, during my journalism course I also learnt how to make films (I wrote a rather embarrassing script when I was 17), edit videos and sounds (which is one of the things I'd like to do if I didn't work with books) and, presumably, write.
Writing has always been the most difficult thing. Still is.
I suppose it should be something simple - sit and type. But we know it's not, or else every blogger out there would rival Jack London or Georges Simenon. I often remember the Nietzschean quote: the author must keep his mouth shut when his work starts to speak
. I felt it in the flesh while reading more than 10 books of philosophy/sociology just for my monograph about a magazine for men... when the time came to put the words on paper, I was pregnant with ideas and it all came not easily, but naturally. I was ready for it.
The more filled with ideas and knowledge
about your subject you are, the better you'll write about it. I won't get here into style, that's another topic, I'm talking about subject
. And it works for research, for novels... and for fanfics.
I was re-reading aphroditemf
's beautiful fanfic Greasy Spoon
and her comments on it (I am always interested in other people's process of creation), and she talked there about "real-life" fanfics not being as well-researched as they could be. She is right - most of fanfics, specially slash, happen in an isolated bubble. Two guy shagging in an random room somewhere in the world. Not that this kind of thing cannot happen, but no man is a "spherical cow in a vacuum". A well-researched context can definitely enrich the narrative, not to mention help the author to grasp the characters and their individual voices better.
Very well. So, I'm still struggling a bit with my runaway muse (she is only interested in poetry these days) and as I pondered about this, I began to think that maybe I have a huge gap in my research. It's not to say I have not read Pink Floyd books, biographies and interviews, but maybe I need more
- something is missing. I'm guilty of writing "two-guys-in-a-random-room" stories, and while I don't regret writing them, I do think now they could've been better developed.
It was not simply aphroditemf
's comment that made me think of it. Today I was making an ebook (it's one of the many things I do here), and while working on it I read some parts of the story... It's a fictional novel based on real people, and while the author's style is not one of my favorites, I admired him for the intense research he put on this book. And he did not fell into the trap of turning his narrative into an essay, so he could showcase his enviable bibliography (some people do it, and it's pedantic unless you are writing a thesis). There was a good balance. The story flowed, because the author had a helluva information under his belt and knew when to use it and when to rely on his imagination.
What is my conclusion? I need to sit down and study a bit more. I have been a lazy writer! And the Pink Floyd is one of my favorite bands in the world - I want my contribution to the fandom to be a good one. Oh, but why take fanfics so seriously? It's not fanfics, mon cher ami
- it's writing that I take seriously. Why make it shitty if I can make it better?
I think I barged into the fandom in a wave of fiery passion, when I discovered that people really wrote Pink Floyd fanfics. I was excited! With so much Fire and Water in my natal chart, I'm prone to that. But now I need to collect my wits and do some research. There are plenty of books on Pink Floyd out there.
I trust the muse will return when she has material to work with.