Monday, January 30, 2006

Ditching The Book Of Love

As I mentioned in my last post, Julie Elizabeth Leto has an article entitled, ‘Ditching "The Book Of My Heart" For "The Book Of My Voice".’

Leto says she never really knew what the ‘book of her heart’ was and, furthermore, if she would want to write it. She says in the article, “I believe in the ‘art’ of writing, but I believe equally in the business and marketability.”

However, the only alternative phrase she knew was, ‘The Book Of My Wallet,’ which, by the way, she says she can relate to. The problem is this: I don’t think many writers go into writing novels just to make money. With the odds as they are for ‘making it,’ even if only enough to survive on, I’m not sure any writer writes for the money.

Leto heard a new expression at a seminar she attended: ‘The Book Of Your Voice.’ She says, “The cost of the entire NINC conference was justified, for me, in that one phrase. Here's a term I can sink my teeth into, though I contend the article should be changed from "The" to "A." Just so I can keep on writing more than one.”

She goes on to define ‘voice’ and says, “Bottom line--Voice is what makes the writing uniquely yours.” If you are interested in more detail about what ‘voice’ is, I suggest you check out the article.

What peaked my interest about this article is that I do know what ‘The Book Of Your Heart’ is. That’s what my original WIP is. I have a story (yes, it’ll be cathartic to write) that I need to tell. But, after doing some research, I’m not sure it is meant to be read.

Long story short, I’ve decided to continue working on If I Knew Then and see where it takes me. Maybe I’ll send it out when it’s done, maybe not. This will also take the pressure off with my perfectionism. I have, however, started another story, tentatively titled Picture Perfect. It’s funny, as soon as I decided to do this (write a marketable book), the story came to me, one, two, three. I know how it starts, I know the ending and I have a mindful of ideas for conflict and resolution. I even have a subplot. The most important fact about this decision, for me, is that I am actually writing it for a particular market, as described by publishing house submission guidelines. Oh what fun it is to write…

What about you? I’m curious to know, was your first book a “Book Of Your Heart?”

Have a great week,
Nienke






10 comments:

Shesawriter said...

The book of my heart is already written. The book I'm currently writing ... well, I wouldn't even know where to begin. Is it of my heart? Um ... no. I think I'd prolly label it the book of my "super" imagination.

Tanya

Melissa Marsh said...

I think every book I write is a combination of heart and voice. My heart has to be in it to write it, of course - if I don't love it, then I can't justify writing it just for the market.

Me said...

Hi! Thanks for stopping by today. If I can ever get a pen to paper, there will be several "books of my heart"--one for each different story my heart has to tell, I guess! Maybe soon...

anders said...

My first good book (novella, technically), The Magician's Rock, is also the book of my heart. Which isn't to say that I'm not having a blast with my current WiPs -- but TMR is special to me.

Janna of Canada said...

My first novel (which I didn't finish) was definitely a book of some part of my anatomy, although whether that part is actually my heart is another matter entirely. I have a grand plan to rewrite it some day, so perhaps I'll find my heart in it yet.

The true book of my heart would have to be my WIP, which seems to be drawing upon personal hardships from the past a fair bit more than I planned. Still, I think the story is marketable (me of the biased opinion that I am), but even if it's not, I'll be glad to have written it since writing is cheaper than therapy. Overall, though, I agree with Melissa's comment.

Jean said...

So far, they're all books of my heart. And like Janna, they all contain other parts of my anatomy--revision should bring them closer to the heart.

Rene said...

My first book was book of the heart but it really wasn't very good. I now try to focus on the book of my voice. Most of the time, the two are the same or maybe that is a natural evolution in my writing.

Kelly Parra said...

Right now my book of my heart is the one I just sold. The question is as I further my writing, and write more books, will the first remain the one?

Couldn't say! =D

colleen said...

My first book was both I think. A fire was set beneath me after losing two brothers a month apart. I had no time to prepare or do research or think about it. I think I'm a better writer for having done it but it took writing the book to be able to say that.

Clare said...

Hello! I'm new here.

Anyway, to answer your question...

My first book was definitely the book of my heart. It was everything I ever wanted to write, all rolled into one. I'd never written anything before - not even a short story - so there was a lot of stuff waiting to pour out. Unsurprisingly, the result was a bit messy and unstructured. But I was stunningly lucky in that it was picked up and published.

I'm now working on Novel II, which is The First Book of One of My Voices. Yes, I am now working on a 'voice', and although my heart is in there, it's taking a back seat. The wallet keeps jumping up and down and demanding attention too, but I tell it not to be so silly. Still, this is only one voice amongst what I hope will be many as my writing career matures.

P.S. "This will also take the pressure off with my perfectionism." I relate to this a lot. My first novel developed wings when I received 33 rejections (based on the first three chaps - the rest was unwritten) and decided it would never be published. Suddenly the pressure to please some mythical editor was off, and I was writing to please only myself. It made the whole enterprise a hell of a lot easier.