I have a bazillion ideas. That doesn’t mean they are all good ideas, but trust me when I say that my brain is a noisy place to live.
Choosing one and then seeing it through to completion and eventual publication in book form can be (generally is) a long, convoluted process. Eventually, though, things sometimes come together and, voila, a book emerges at the other end of all the false starts and frustrations, trials and tribulations.
Writing depressing stuff sucks. When the tough content is book-length, that means months of research, reading, thinking, ruminating, writing, organizing, reorganizing, editing, rewriting — and then more of the same.
One of the most heart-rending projects I took on was If a Tree Falls: The Global Impact of Deforestation. It was requested as a follow-up to Deep Roots: How Trees Sustain Our Planet, my earlier book in the same series. Deep Roots celebrates trees and all they contribute to our lives.
“I don’t write poetry.”
The workshop student looked a little shocked I should even suggest such a thing.
“I’m writing a novel.”
“Hey, I’m not forcing anyone to do anything they don’t want to do, but I can always tell when someone who is well-versed in verse tries their hand at writing a novel.”
The would-be novelist put her pen on her notebook and crossed her arms over her chest. “How can you tell?”
“Because the writing is vivid, crisp. Every word counts. Clichés are scarce. The writing tends to be…” I struggled to find the right word…