Today we have Author Charlene A Wilson here at RtM.
I asked my favorite question ...
I asked my favorite question ...
What is the hardest part of being an author for you?
When I read the question, I sat and thought about all the editing I’m going through right now with my Aumelan series. Cut the unnecessary adjectives, avoid adverblys (yeah, my own word there to remind me to hate the “ly” words), check for run-on sentences, axe the dialogue tags… You know the drill.
Not to mention the final edits I went through with the first two books of the Chronicles of Shilo Manor series—insert commas, add “and”s to the “then”s… Thank goodness I’m past that as Cornerstone Deep is published and Cornerstone Deep Echoes will be released tomorrow; both a mile stone and an awe striking moment for me. Are they really the best they could be? Will I ever really know? Sometimes I wonder if my work will ever be good enough. But, I did my best, look forward to the next, and am getting better with each.
Then, I realized something. The question wasn’t what I thought the hardest thing about being a writer was. It’s, “What is the hardest part of being an author for you?” That made me think.
I always thought of writer and author as being synonymous, though people seemed to select one or the other with purpose when then they talked about the craft. So, thanks to Romancing the Muses, I decided to look into it and find out, once and for all, what the difference between being an author and being a writer really is.
Now, of course, authors write. And, of course, writers can author. But, according to DifferenceBetween.net, “A writer is a person who writes a book, article, or any literary piece, while an author is essentially the person who originates the idea, plot, or content of the work being written. If you are writing a novel or short story based on a plot developed by self, you get to be known as the author of the novel. And if you are penning down someone else’s ideas or stories, you will be known as the writer of the work. Being a writer is at times easier than being an author. The reason being that an author has to create, develop, and communicate an idea, while a writer has to only communicate somebody else’s idea.”
“When it comes to writing books, a person becomes an author only when the book is published. If your work is unpublished, and even if the idea is purely your own, you will still be considered as the person who wrote the work. And when your work is published you get to be known as the author of the work. So if you write a lot, but never get them published and out to the public, you remain a writer.”
Okay. That didn’t totally make sense to me since a script-writer writes scripts and is known as a writer and not an author even though it’s published. But they also say…
Isn’t that wonderful? I finally got an answer to a question I never really gave much thought to. And the answer to how I should be answering my question, “How do I answer Romancing the Muses’ question?”…. Right, so I found out that what I considered the hardest thing about doing what I’m doing isn’t the hardest thing about what I am. But, we’ll go from here… (If you’re not totally confused by my line of thought by now, don’t worry. I’m confused enough for all of us. *wink*)
Being the creator of my stories, I’m calling myself the author of them. And in the creation process, I guess I would have to say the hardest thing would be making sure it all lines up. Stories can flow and practically write themselves when my characters and I are in sync. I’m one of those authors whose characters talk to them. They let me know what they should be doing in their lives.
But, getting it all properly laid out and flowing freely to where it makes sense to the reader can be difficult. We have to make sure the timeline fits—Let’s say I’m writing chapter fourteen. I have General Hilton in Sun City coming unglued and blowing up at Chad for endangering the population by introducing his people’s energy vampirish ways. But, in chapter fifteen, Chad is still in the World Beneath the Rock trying to convince the Leading Fathers of Aumelan to trust the people of the Sun with their secret. He hasn’t traveled to the World Above yet. Not good.
I double, triple, quadruple checked to make sure characters stay in character. I’d hate to have Mianna, a daughter of an Arylin colony and avid follower of the Goddess of Love, scoff at someone worshiping their God. Or, timid Mandy take on her reincarnated twin’s characteristic, who’s far beyond any five year old, of explaining the spiritual progression a soul.
There is so much that goes into the process of crafting a book. So much more than I ever dreamed of before I decided to take on this career. Would I trade it for anything else? Not a chance. Whether you call me a writer or an author, I’m here to stay. The Chronicles of Shilo Manor will keep growing…Cornerstone Deep Destiny is in the creation process now. Aumelan will hopefully be ready to submit later this year. Here’s to new worlds, hard work, and loving it.