Writers Deserve Respect

I’ve been doing a little editing this morning. Tinkering with structure and content, adding, removing, moving words around until I have them just where I want them. Where they can make the maximum impact, allowing the characters and story to pop off the page like popcorn from the pan. Edging ever nearer the perfect sentence, the slippery fish that always seems to wriggle out of my grasp at the very last moment.

It’s a tedious but necessary process. Akin to chipping away at a formless block of marble, hopeful that a masterpiece lies within, awaiting your skilled hands to reveal it. At the time, editing can seem pointless and unnecessary, a real drag. It is a deeply unglamorous process, about as far removed from the stereotypical image of the passionate, spontaneous writer. It takes patience and perseverance.

But that’s how you improve, that’s how you get better. It can feel like one step forward and three steps back but writing a book is like that, a war of attrition where every tiny victory comes at a cost. Walk into any bookshop and cast an eye around the thousands of titles on the shelves, vying for your attention. Every one of them, famous classic or little read potboiler, was a work of passion, a project that consumed its creator from start to finish.

We might not be everybody’s cup of tea, but anyone who sets out to write a book deserves our respect for undertaking such an arduous challenge. Anyone who succeeds in completing one and then seeing it through to actual publication is already a hero in my eyes, even if it never sells a copy. Those who mock or ignore are many but it’s so much easier to destroy than it is to construct. Writers deserve so much more.

Published by Fractured Faith Blog

We are Stephen and Fionnuala and this is our story. We live in Northern Ireland, have been married for 17 years and have three kids - Adam, Hannah and Rebecca. We hope that our story will inspire and encourage others. We have walked a rocky road yet here we are today, together and stronger than ever. We are far from perfect and our faith has been battered and bruised. But an untested faith is a pointless faith. Just as a fractured faith is better than none at all. We hope you enjoy the blog.

19 thoughts on “Writers Deserve Respect

  1. Absolutely! I was in several bookshops today reminding myself of the very things you have covered in this post, marvelling at how many titles there are, and looking for those familiar names and whether there was something different in the offing. And I am enjoying very much the world you have created around young Kirkwood.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Well put Stephen -there’s a big difference between the compulsion to write and the final draft, but that is precisely the work element which improves the writer. What I find difficult is the ra-ra process of advertising myself in the publication phase as I’m sure many other writers also do.


  3. Amen! I don’t make a point of telling people I’ve written books, after getting a few thinly veiled “I’m sure you have, dear.” But I have received some compliments like “I just read your book … i-it was really good!” and I don’t know whether to take it as a compliment, or be insulted at how surprised they sound that I actually could have done a good job. (*eye roll*)


  4. The thing that makes a writer a writer is exactly what you’ve said here: they write. Not that they sell books. Not that they become famous. Not that they write a particular genre or for a.particular audience. Tulle one simple fact that they write is enough.

    And as Neil Gaiman says: finish things!


Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: