From author Susan Kaye Quinn:
Sometimes I think I was made for indie publishing: it’s writing and wild creativity mixed with massive amounts of rule breaking. And indies don’t just break rules. We blow them up, reducing them to subatomic particle sized pieces. Indie publishing isn’t just changing publishing, it’s changing writers.
It may take a while for this to sink in.
. . . .
There’s an invisible, oppressive tangle of influences pressing down on writers, telling them the “rules” from the very first moment they set pen to paper, saying what things are “acceptable” and “not acceptable” to write. It starts young, too. You should see the looks of shock on children’s faces when I teach writing workshops and lead them in a writing exercise and tell them they can write anything they like.
“Anything?” they ask. The deer-in-headlights look is somewhat from blank-page syndrome. But we’ve just finished talking about conflict being the root of the story and that they should use X vs. Y as a starting point, fill in the blanks. So, I’m not leaving them totally in the wind. Still, they’re agog. “We can write anything?” It’s like they’re just sure they heard me wrong.
“Yes, anything,” I say. “Monkeys vs. Zebras. Lettuce vs. Tomato. Pick something. Anything.”
“What if I want to write about zombies?”
“Zombies versus what?”
“Zombies vs. Aliens!” I point at her dramatically, doing my best Robin Williams impression from Dead Poet’s Society. “Now you’re thinking. Be daring!”
A small girl is looking at me intensely, so I turn to her. “What are you going to write about?” She doesn’t say anything. “You don’t have to share,” I say, lowering my Robin-Williams-volume. “Just write it.”
She hesitates. Then she says in this tiny voice, smaller even than she is, “Can I write about brain vs. body? Because the brain wants to live by itself and learn new things and go out into the world, but it can’t because it needs the body and the body doesn’t want to go. The body is afraid.”
Link to the rest at Susan Kaye Quinn and thanks to Lynn for the tip.