Pitchfork and Pen—A Writer’s Voices


I began my writing experience with the idea of one novel just for fun, to kill time waiting on kids. That’s it—it was supposed to be a hobby. The only supplies necessary were cheap notebooks and some pens.

Any author will probably admit that a story idea has a voice and “speaks” to him or her, sometimes rather insistently.

I didn’t know at the beginning that I would “hear” the characters. But as the story unfolded, this guy, my hero, my protagonist, would get almost obnoxiously loud.

And then something wonderful happened. As I neared the end of my first hero’s story, another character found his voice, and shared it with me.

I had thought I would never be able to scare up an idea for that second story, but I did, and finished it, creating the second novel in my Knights of Kismera series. What started out as one novel had me hoping, and wishing for just one more idea.

The next thing I knew a third voice piped up, with a fourth whispering in the background. screen-shot-2016-11-28-at-2-28-27-pmSoon it became a crowd’s worth of voices. A woman’s voice rang out over some of the others. Instead of armor, she wears a cowboy hat, and wears boots with spurs and carries a gun.

Reading something fun or seeing something on television gives me ideas to mull over. Just listening to family members recalling something interesting they heard might plant that little germ of an idea for a story, be it a novel idea, a short story, or a Facebook or blog post.

I have wondered about how someone such as the great Nora Roberts, who has written well over 250 books, keeps coming up with new ideas. Surely she sits around at some point thinking, “Now what?” If she does, I bet it doesn’t last long. Perhaps if she does have those moments of writer’s block, there is a bit of peace in her mind from “voices.”

I hope now that the “voices” will keep raising up their words for me to hear. I had the epiphany that to be an author was what I wanted, and needed to do although it took me a while to figure that out. Now that I have, I pray every day that I have time to get down all the words that are “spoken” to me.

Read more from Tamara Hartl!


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