Apparently my writing identity involves procrastination and a general sense of lackadaisy. I’ve been in a blogging/reading/writing slump. In June, I finished only three books and listened to only two audiobooks. Writing-wise, my progress has been glacial. I simply cannot find motivation. It is ironic I have posted about writer’s block and now find myself succumbing to the malady. I’m attempting to self-medicate with short stories, flash fiction, and a Kindle backlog. I’ll keep you all apprised of my progress.
Given my writer’s block and general unmotivated state, I’m not going to talk about specific writing tips today.
Instead, I’d like to (briefly) muse on a writer’s identity. I’ve struggled to define myself as a writer, not sure how to effectively break down my style. My current work-in-progress manuscript is fantasy, but I don’t consider myself a fantasy author. Most of my short stories and other book ideas are non-genre fiction. I don’t consider that a huge problem; I don’t seek to be a “genre” writer, and plenty of published authors have dabbled in genre. However, I need to be able to define myself in a specific way – even if I can’t break that into categories.
Then I read the beautiful and captivating debut The Snow Child by Eowyn Ivey. There’s a line with which I fell in love: “There is something fanciful and yet feral about them [drawings of Alaska].”
This was, of course, the descriptor for which I was searching: fanciful and yet feral. That is what I write: something with a touch of whimsy and darkness, that skates on the edge between magic and madness. My writing identity is not a category, and it’s not about genre; it’s about themes and style, purpose and prose.
How would you identify yourself as a writer? What descriptors would you use?
Ivey, Eowyn (2012-02-01). The Snow Child: A Novel (p. 251). Reagan Arthur Books. Kindle Edition.