Communicating a better story

Blogging in the early days. (Image by Sailko - Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0)

Blogging in the early days. (Image by Sailko - Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0)

Monday was exciting, in a scary crazy way. While making some changes to my website, I accidentally deleted my blog. Not just bits and pieces of it, but all of it. Every single post that I've written since 2011.

Gone.

Poof.

All with the press of a button.

Sort of like we'd all like to do to 2016, but that's another blog post for another day.

Anyway, the weird thing was, as the savage horror of what I'd done settled in around me, I felt this incredible sense of relief too, like a terrible burden had been removed from my shoulders. In that instant--the moment of relief, not the moment of horror--I considered quitting, well, everything: the writing, the blogging, the endless marketing.

For all of ... oh, I don't know ... two hours, I thought I could walk away from the Internet and writing all together. It was tempting. Had I not experienced one of the most productive writing weekends that I've had in a long time, I might have done it.

The short story "Every Hair Casts a Shadow" for the Evil is a Matter of Perspective anthology totally came together for me this past weekend. A synopsis for a new novel fell into place, and I realized that I loved telling stories (fiction, not lies). As much as I would like to say it's all about you, it's not ... writing is a release valve for me, because the process gives me a chance to communicate my thoughts and ideas to other people.

I'm well aware that authors talk about craft and plot and characterization, but writing good fiction is primarily about communication ... not simply communicating a good story, but communicating themes and ideas in an entertaining manner. I don't want to tell people what to think. I want others to discover ideas within themselves, because when someone unearths the seeds for a new way of thinking, that person owns the idea, and when we own something, we become a little more willing to fight for the principles surrounding the concept.

Reading--both fiction and nonfiction--should be about discovery. I love the Carlos Ruiz Zafón quote about books being like mirrors--they show us what we already have within ourselves. At the same time, a different angle can lend us a new perception, both of ourselves and the world around us.

Again, good communication is the key, and this blog, as well as my fiction, allows me to hone my communication skills in different ways.

So the blog is back, thanks to the good folks at Squarespace, who saw my tweets of distress and gave me the key to restoring that page. Their excellent support services are what keeps me here.

With all of that said, I guess you're stuck with me for a little while longer. I'm happy about it. I hope you are too.