The last few weeks have been an interesting one for me. Late one Thursday night a vengeful wind tore through my backyard, ripping a large limb from a tree. The loud sound of its landing followed by the instant loss of power startled me from my writing. I powered down my laptop and emerged back into the real world.
A week had gone by without the pleasure of electricity. I found myself unable to write because of it. Excuse after excuse, I was completely full of them. Once the “POWER” was restored, I still found myself uninspired to write due to the lack of internet at my home.
Edgar Allen Poe, Nathanial Hawthorne, Mark Twain, and Louisa May Alcott did not need the comforts of the modern author to produce an amazing and engaging story. Not having google at their fingertips didn’t stop their imagination. So, I have to ask myself, why did I allow these things to get in the away from doing what I love?
Pressures of being faster and better, I - like most modern authors - have relied on advancing technology to meet the ever-evolving expectation. What we are losing in the process? I believe I'm missing out on the joy and magic of writing.
As I think back on what I could have done differently during my “dark times”, I’ve decided to change my approach to writing with my next novel. It’s time to turn off the electricity, light a candle, challenge my inter Poe, and rely 100% on my own imagination.
If you’re a reader, you have that one book you go back and read over and over again. That book for me is A Slipping Down Life by Anne Tyler. Shocking, right? I know what you’re thinking. But Amber, that’s not fantasy…
I was introduced to author Anne Tyler during a high school reading assignment. My teacher at the time thought it would be a great idea to allow the class to pick their own book to read from a list of course he provided. As expected from the pimple-infested, hormone-raging young adults, the book with the fewest page count won out. So, Dinner at the Homesick Restaurant (the first book I’ve ever read by this author) found its way into my book bag and I, unlike most of my classmates, read the book and finished my report.
Fast forward a few years later and I found myself standing in a local bookstore. Ok, I was working and shelving books, but that’s a topic for another blog. Sitting on the shelf was the book from high school. The memory brought a smile to my face and since I was looking for my next book to read, I thought, why not. After my shift, I bought my first copy of A Slipping Down Life because the back synopsis sounded interesting…
Now when I say interesting, I had no clue how much I would come to love this story. I gobbled it up within hours of starting it. Why, you may ask. I connected with Evie Decker, a slightly overweight, shy girl who comes out of her shell because of music. In a way, the character reminded me of…me. (Only slightly braver once she found her confidence.)
I think I’ve read this book at least 30 times. I know because I just had to throw away my beat up and torn paperback copy. But I keep going back to the story to remember how I felt as a teen and how far I’ve come. Time to buy a replacement!
Tell me about your re-read book.