March 01, 2008

Why We Write

Selling Words on a Page

It occurs to me that the title of my blog has many meanings. The first is literal-exchanging thoughts typed or written onto a page for money. That's an ideal that many writers dream of. Even successful writers have limited monetary success. Published authors who write excellent books making no more than $30,000 a year (without benefits!) or less. Of course, for every billion writers in the world there's a Michael Crichton, a Dan Brown, a Stephen King, a Jeph Loeb, a J.K. Rowling, a Robert Ludlum. They sell a million books, they make movies, and they make bank.

The second meaning of my blog title is still fairly literal and relates directly to the marketing side of things. Without a strong push for people to actually read the material, it doesn't get read. And trust me, there's no lack of trying on behalf of these writers.

There's another meaning that's not so literal. It refers to getting an audience to buy into a work of art. The art of selling the words to the reader. Creating a believable world, a compelling storyline, interesting and dynamic characters, and strong emotional connections. It's putting what's in your head onto the page and eliciting a positive response from your audience.

My Writing

I write because God gave me the desire. It's that simple. When I was a kid I used to pretend I was part of movie trailers. Give me a wiffleball bat and I became a knight fighting off hordes of ogres. Eventually, I started putting the thoughts onto a blank page of paper. And I didn't always just write. Sometimes I illustrated pictures. It didn't matter as long as I had the opportunity to express what was going on inside my head.

And then a couple things happened. I started reading more. I started writing more. I studied the art of it (I still do!). All of the sudden I was a writer. I even intended to major in Creative Writing in college (fortunately, I learned just before registration that writers don't make money). I've even tried to stop over the years, but I keep coming back to it.

I've published several stories, been interviewed by a local paper, and I started with my friend, Nathan Scheck. I'm very fortunate. I consider it a gift from God, and I'm grateful that He's given it to me.

Part of what I've always hoped to do is to use writing as a means for ministry. I'm not a great evangelist, probably never will be, but I can write. So, it's with great pleasure that I am able to say that when stories like The Arena (published several years back in Dragons, Knights, and Angels Magazine) and Understanding (on sale now at as a part of the Infinite Space, Infinite God anthology) have been released to a larger audience.

It's not just about money. It's about the art itself, it's about ministry, and it's just fun. So, thanks to everybody out there who has read the anthology, and to those who have taken the time to check out I appreciate it, and I hope God continues to give me the ability to write, because I really enjoy it.

With that, I leave you with a little self-promotion (it's titled "Selling Words on a Page," okay?). Here are some reviews of Infinite Space, Infinite God (I happen to like the first one best):

Until next time...God Bless!


Sherer said...

that a-boy! site looks cool man

Sarah Reinhard said...

I'm with you when you say God gave you the desire and thus you write. From what I read in ISIG, you write well.

J Sherer said...

Sarah, thanks for your comment! It's cool to realize that God has given you the desire to do something. It makes it even more meaningful to scrawl words out on a page.

And I'm really glad you've read "Understanding" in Infinite Space, Infinite God!

Thanks for reading. I'd love to hear your thoughts about other blog posts.