I’m WL Emery, author of Magic for Hire, an anthology about an itinerant wizard who travels around the countryside making his living as a magician and sometime merchant,
Murder One, a hardboiled detective novel involving murder, money, and red hot women, and Deemed Unsuitable, a ray gun romance short story that I wrote specifically for Cirsova magazine. You can find all three of these on Amazon, using the following links:
I got started writing several years ago when my girlfriend suggested I write her a story.
“A story? About what?”
“Oh, kill someone off.”
So I did, and in the process got revenge on an antique, sadistic elementary public school teacher. My girlfriend was horrified (we’ve since broken up, and I’m once again between migraines).
I read the book On Writing, by Stephen King, and shortly thereafter began producing stories about Otheldo, an itinerant wizard who travels about trying to make a living, but as his old mentor once told him, “If it were easy, everyone would do it.”
When people learn that I’m a published author, I invariably get the question, “How do you do it? Make up a story, I mean. Do you just… well, make it up as you go?”
The truth is that if you sit down to write and can’t think of anything, and sometimes I can’t, you start with a character. Put your character someplace, and pretty soon someone else will come along and talk to him, and the story starts. Other questions I get concern the characters; people wonder if these characters are actually people I know in real life. With the possible exception of the active members of my current writing group (Eastside Fiction Writers), the answer is the same one you’ll get from most writers: No. Even if they were I’d never admit it, and neither will any other author. Consider Sterling North, who published Rascal and then discovered that half his family would no longer speak to him after reading this ‘Memoir of a better era’. Characters in fiction are purely imaginative, or are created as composites featuring the personality traits of several people, but that’s as far as it goes.
If you have the urge to write, go write something. Join a group of writers comprised of published authors, and ask for a review of your work. They’ll probably tell you to fix the spelling and grammar, and possibly offer a few more suggestions which you should consider but not automatically implement. After that, go ahead and start the publishing process. Once your work is published, congratulate yourself and start reading the reviews. Ignore the bad reviews. You’ll get bad reviews for the same reasons every published author does. Someone doesn’t like your work, or has been paid not to like your work, or has taken offense at something you wrote on your facebook page. Political opinions, for instance, are something to refrain from.
All that aside, about the only thing a writer can do wrong is not write. Sit at the keyboard and write.
As I write this piece, I’m reminded that I have two more anthologies to finish and publish, a novel that isn’t getting any closer to being finished, and a short story that I hope is accepted for publication in Cirsova. I must get back to work.
Thank you for reading. You can reach me at my web site, WL Emery. If you have any criticisms, please write them on the back of a twenty dollar bill and send it to:
Columbus, Ohio 43232-9999