Léna is also a Regional Manager for Writopia Lab whose mission is to foster joy, literacy, and critical thinking in kids and teens from all backgrounds through creative writing.

"Well, the question is, what do you want to believe? Do you want to live in a world where things are possible, or in one where they aren't?" Cin, Edges.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Writers Are Naive

Moonlit Night -- a "naive photograph"Image by onkel_wart via Flickr
Well, maybe I should speak for myself, but I only mean it in the kindest way. Or do I?

We have to have a sense of naiveté to push us through writing, both a sense of wonder and human vulnerability and compassion. We have to be authentic, genuine, "without artifice". We are constantly taking leaps of faith.

Maybe that's why the publishing industry has me pulling my hair, because so much is artificial. There is so much to weed through. I don't want to just build an audience - I want to build a community. I want to interact with readers and writers, with other folks who want to transform and transcend through the power of creative expression, or by sharing a world with an author. It's an intimate relationship, between reader and author, isn't it? Whether we love a book or not, we co-create with the author. We bring ourselves to the table.

There are so many places I want to go to, and someday, I hope to have the means to have a live tour, with real hugs instead of virtual ones.

I took a leap of faith with Twitter today, by starting to engage in chats with other ya authors on yalitchat. It was fun, until people started joking about sex parties and drinking. I jumped in and said that my book was about recovery from all of that, and that pretty much stopped the conversation. Did I open mouth and insert foot? Feeling a little insecure, and yes, naive!

But I won't stop taking leaps and trying to learn!

I have signed up to do free Skype visits with teachers/ librarians/ book clubs this spring who have read Edges. You can find out more about it here! I am very excited to interact in this way with people.


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  1. Nice! Can't sweat the haters. Keep going!

  2. Thanks for sharing. I am definitely naive as well. It takes so much to be vulnerable. Bravo.

  3. great post and thanks for being vulnerable. It's a little trite, but the phrase "if you build it, they will come" came to mind as I read this. Not build as in "build your website, your following, etc" but rather build as in building relationships. You get that. I love it. It reminds me of the fine line between process and product. I get in the flow and am loving the process and look up to gaze on the product and ugh, the beautiful process thing seems to elude me. When I focus on the process,the product comes. I think that's what the publishing industry misses as they fixate on product.

    Sorry for midnight rambling. I'm blaming it on the Excedrin migraine!

  4. Thank you Alison!

    Dianne - your not rambling! You are spot on.

  5. Allegra Goodman has a Q & A section on her website where anyone can send her a message and she responds. Check it out. You could create community with YA readers that way, too.

  6. I will def check out! Thanks Hope!

  7. I love that "don't sweat the haters" line! Ditto!

  8. "Sentimental", at first look and cheap research papers in English, seems partnered with, as opposed to contradicted to "innocent", so title needs some clarification.

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