After years of traveling photographing landscapes and flowers, I’ve begun writing. First short stories and then one day, my story grew too long. Now, I write mysteries and I teach how to write them. My first two are now in print, Harry One-Sigh: The Fraud Murders and Bloodlust: A Harry One-Sigh Novel. My third novel, Endgame, is being reviewed and expected to be released by the end of the year. Look for them at Chapters or on Amazon.
My fourth novel 97 Phantom Road is mostly written, but there’s the editing/revision stage to get through. It’s also a Harry One-Sigh novel.
So that brings me to this series of posts. I’m here to talk about writing with anyone who’s interested in exchanging ideas. Some of the questions I have I can’t answer myself. For instance,
- where does a writer get his characters?
- how does the sequence of events that makes up the narrative come about?
- how does a writer get dialogue to work? After all, every character has to sound convincing, no matter where he comes from socially.
- what are the limitations and liberties that paper provides?
Painting, for instance, is limited by a flat canvas and pigments. Any third dimension stuff has to be invented. Representations have to be convincing too, unless the work is purely abstract, and even then, there’s an underlying structure. Music’s limited by notes and the peculiarities and the limitations of instruments. Every art form has design limitations of some sort, but every one of them transcends such limitations. How does that happen?
In terms of novels, I should have an idea but I don’t. So the transcendence thing I’ll leave alone. One writer said that it’s not the words, it’s the paper in between, the space, the gaps. Another said the words are only the smoke, it’s the fire that matters. Well, that’s a pair of loose paraphrases at best. Since I can’t do any better at defining the transcendence thing, I’ll just discuss stuff and see if I get any closer to some kind of understanding.