Well, of course writer’s block exists, but you must admit the title made you want to read this. Creative writing means being able to write creatively, and while that seems to be one of those “duh” statements, sometimes keeping it simple produces some of the easiest and best reads.
While working on a recent project, I devised a word strategy game which I was quite proud of. I made all of these calls to the copyright office and legal advisers to see if there was any way to protect the concept of the game and not just the content of the book. I was told that you can’t copyright ideas, only the way in which they are expressed. I spent hours agonizing over the possibility that someone with more resources would read about my game and run with it—leaving me with no recognition or profit.
Excited about this game which is imperative to the story line, I decided to run it through my filters (most trusted friends and avid readers), to get their painfully honest opinions of it.
I began by discussing the concept of the book (which they loved), the decision to create a series rather than a novel (which they agreed), and then the concept and rules of my scholar-friendly, all rights reserved protected, I will find away to sue you if I smell a hint of theft, word strategy game (which completely confused them). To make matters worse, I found myself struggling to explain it.
Don’t confuse creative, complicated, and complex. Creativity calls for imagination and a freely expressive approach to construction. Just watch any 5-year-old who is allowed to pick their own ice cream toppings or their outfit for school. Complicated is creative turned confusing. It can be a killer concept with a shocking twist that took so many turns that Google maps just reads “you’re screwed”.
Then there is complex. This is the tightrope between creative and complicated. It’s kinda like making lasagna for readers. You can have simple ingredients, layered and proportioned just right, that provide an indulgent sensory experience sopped up with a buttery hunk of garlic bread.
I had to ask myself if being a legend in my own mind was more important than building relationships with readers who trust me not to be their literary tour guide with a poor sense of direction. It ultimately meant shelving that complicated game in favor of a more readable, relatable, and easily comprehended one.
At first I felt like I wasn’t remaining true to myself. Like I was trading in my beloved rocky road for just plain vanilla—and then it occurred to me I can always add a few sprinkles.
Her most recent project, Joseph’s Destiny Adventure Part 1: Daily’s Dreams, is the first release in the adventure series. It will also serve as the illustrative narrative to her 40 FOR 40 FOR ME Coaching Series which will launch following the completion of the JDA series.