On writing... {oh wait, someone else already wrote that}

Reading usually precedes writing and the impulse to write is almost always fired by reading. Reading, the love of reading, is what makes you dream of becoming a writer.

~Susan Sontag

Yup. What she said!

There truly is nothing more inspiring than reading someone else's really great writing to get your own writing juices flowing. And right now, I feel like a flood-swollen river is raging through my brain.

I have just finished reading all of the Five Star Friday posts from Schmutzie's  weekly weblog round-up and all I can say is...

OH. MY. GAWD. It was one helluva good week for the writers of the interwebs!

I can't possible recap all of it, so just head on over there and read them all! It is well worth your time, I promise. (Also, I may be full-on fangirl crushing on Schmutzie right now, she really is kind of super-duper awesome!)

And speaking of WRITERS.

I said it last night.

Someone asked me what I do and I said, " I am a writer."

I am not sure that all would 'technically' agree with me on this one, but it is how I feel about myself. It is how I want to feel and think  about what I am doing with my life and since it now is what I am doing (in between all the mothering, wife-ing and life living stuff), I am going to say it again.

I am a writer.

I may not be a particularly GOOD writer just yet, but I am getting there. I am truly focused on becoming better at this craft and am right now setting new goals for myself in this regard! I have made the very tough decision to forgo any major blogging conferences this year in favor of taking a few creative writing courses and finding a great writing retreat or seminar to attend. I am getting serious here people!

And something else happened today. An idea popped into my head. One that has never happened before. A fictional idea.

A BOOK idea.

I have never thought of myself as a fiction writer (well, let's be honest, I have not really been thinking of myself as a writer at all until very recently), so the fact that I had this little brain toot today kind of came as a surprise to me. And I just can't stop thinking about it.

That must mean something right?

Now before I start getting WAY too ahead of myself, I figure I am going to need a few things to get me to the point that I (and others) can feel more comfortable identifying me as a writer. To that end, I am arming myself with some tools of the trade recommended to me by some amazing writers that I love and respect.

First up, On Writing, A Memoir of the Craft by Stephen King.

Everyone, and I mean EVERYONE that I know, who has read this book has said that it is life {and craft} changing! I have just finished reading the first two of his three forewords and I can already see that this will likely be the case for me too.

And because Mr. King said so in the second of the aforementioned forewords, the other tool of the trade that I am arming myself with is Strunk & White's The Elements of Style. I figure if I am to be any kind of writer, it is probably a good idea to have THE essential book of writing at my disposal. I am sure I am breaking all the basic rules of writing left, right and centre every day here, some of them I recognize, others I do not. Let's hope this helps me recognize the really awful ones and remedy what I can!

Writing is a funny thing. It is freeing, it is strangely addictive and it is incredibly empowering. It taps into that part of me that I often keep hidden deep inside. It lets me exercise my brain, work out my thoughts, ideas and feelings and it is something that is mine. ALL mine. I mean, I share it with all of you of course, but these are my words, my thoughts, my prose.

What I write may not always be that important or interesting to everyone, but for me, every sentence that I type is one step further into this world of words and thought and imagination that makes me feel whole.

And for the last few days all I keep thinking about are the books and blog posts and essays that I have read that have changed my life and I am wondering what it would feel like to be the one who wrote the words that actually did that for someone else....