Sunday, 10 March 2013

Doing the Impossible by Author Erin Butler


A few years ago, on a trip to Disney, I bought a bracelet at a small outdoor shop in the middle of Fantasyland. The bracelet reads, "It's kind of fun to do the impossible." I took it out the other day and put it on for the first time since that trip. It reminded me of how far I've come with my writing. In life, the impossible might be doing something that scares you, or something that you think is so far out of reach, you might as well not even try in the first place. I bought that bracelet with that particular saying over all of the other bracelets with different sayings because it made me think of my writing. It gave me hope. To be published is something that I wanted, badly, and if I admitted it to myself, it was also something that I never thought I'd achieve.

So, how do you get published?

It's called hard work, and lots of it. But like the bracelet says, it was fun hard work. You might have heard the saying, "Write what you know." Well, I say, yes and no. My story, Blood Hex, is about a curse that spans four centuries, and Wicca. I know nothing about either, but I had a hell of a lot of fun researching and dreaming up the plot! Where you write what you know is character interactions. I watch people. Not in the crazy stalker kind of way, but in the way that I know a stiff set of shoulders means someone is mad, or if someone scratches their head, they might be nervous, or confused. Or, it might mean they just have an itch... You have to know your characters to write what they'll do in their different situations.

Like life, the characters in stories want something, need something. For my main character, Sarah, what she wants most in the world is to learn about her dead father. With a mother who is more self-centered than anyone has any right to be, she thinks this is impossible until she finds her father's hidden journal. This gives her hope, and she soon finds that doing the impossible can be kind of fun. She leaves her home and travels to Virginia to meet an aunt she never knew. She meets a boy. She falls for a boy. But also like life, you will get thrown nasty curveballs. Thankfully, not all of them come in the form of a powerful, spiteful witch.

At the end of Sarah's story though, if you asked her if the road was worth the destination, I bet she'd say yes. In fact, I know she'd say yes because I made her up...and I can tell her what to say.

For me, the road was everything. I learned a lot. I got better. I accomplished something: the impossible.

2 comments:

  1. Doing the impossible is fun, isn't it? Congrats on your upcoming book!

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