Friday, June 25, 2010

What Charlaine Harris Reminded Me About Fun

Last summer I briefly met Charlaine Harris, creator of the Sookie Stackhouse novels (see also HBO series True Blood) at the Anhinga Writer's Conference in Florida, where she was the featured speaker. She was a delightful speaker and, while she signed a book of mine, asked me what I was working on. I mumbled something about this little mystery I was writing and she smiled and said, "Well, don't give up. Don't ever give up." It was a nice encouragement from a woman who had well over 100 people in the autograph line behind me.

So when I snagged the recent issue of Writer's Digest, I was delighted to see an interview with her. And the one thing that kept jumping out at me in her answers was the fun she has in writing. She mentioned it a few times, I believe.

It reminded me that I often drain the joy out of my writing by stressing too much about it. I must write today or I'm not a serious writer. I must make this chapter sing. I must.... It goes on and on. Yet one of the main reasons I write is because I enjoy it. I love those golden moments when I can barely keep up with the ideas and words that are flowing out of my head. When I look up and realize I've been in the coffee shop for three hours and they've completely flipped their clientele.

I need to keep remembering why I do what I do on this journey.
What about you?


  1. Yes!!! Everyday my mantra is "I chose this!" Why do we live a life we don't enjoy - or is it just a habit to become complaining whine-a-holics? I don't know but it is a habit I'm determined to break. It is like when you ask someone how they are and they look at you and say "oh, I'm so busy..." WHY? Why? why?
    In exertion one finds joy! And I'm about the fun.

  2. Jan- I love your mantra! I may have to tape that to my laptop! Excellent point.

    Catherine-Thank you!

  3. I came here from Jans blog - great post, and
    i agree-
    we chose writing because we love it but sometimes, like you said, we drain the joy out of it, I think that happens when we become goal orientated and focus totally on "sucess" aka being published,it's good to be reminded to have fun,
    i love the feel of pen on paper, beautiful notebooks full of rapid scrawl and being surprized at what I've written...
    its importent to keep a finger on the pulse, thanks!

  4. Niamh-
    Thanks! I love beautiful notebooks as well. I don't write longhand as much as I once did, but there is a bit of a connection with paper that is more "raw" if you will, than the computer screen. Great thoughts!

  5. Hi Lisa! I'm looking around online for some writing advice and saw your blog, I thought I'd stop by, say hi, but I'm not sure where exactly to provide my message (I don't know if your Comments section is a good place for it or if you have an email for people to write to.)



  6. Gabriel-
    Comments section is fine, or you can shoot me a DM on Twitter, or email me at Thanks for stopping by!