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In a recent conversation with a fellow author, we were discussing an author who changed the direction of a series we both liked. It went from dark and sensual to sex with a meandering plot.
The writer was questioned about this change at a convention by one of her readers and her response was something along the lines of [paraphrasing]: The series took her to a dark place to write it the way it started. So she stopped and went another direction, which for us, the lovers of the original stuff sucked and not in a good way.
I had to pause at the reasoning. Seriously?!
Books should take you, the writer, on a journey so that you may in turn take your reader on one. If you are too much of a chicken to take a flashlight and shine it into all the dark corners of your psyche then you shouldn’t have picked up the book to write it in the first place.
I know, I know. As an author, how can I say that? Writing a good story means you have to bleed the best and worst parts of you and society onto the page. If you aren’t willing to do that, if you aren’t brave enough to do that, why bother?
By altering the character’s story the way she did, she changed a formerly kickass female lead to a whiny, oversexed man toy with an overblown sense of control. The author managed to take her founding character and make her the weakest representation of what a woman can be. Additionally, she managed to write all of the magic out of her world by over simplifying of her character.
Now her series is like watered down Coke. It’s still Coke, but it’s hard to choke down and it tastes like crap.
I say all of this because I am on the verge or writing a story that will take me to an emotionally dark place. I have to go there if I intend to do my character justice.
If I am unwilling to shine that beacon into the darkness, I may as well never write the book. A book done in fear of exploration is not the journey it can be. It is an abomination to the writer spirit.Connect with Kelsey Jordan: Website Facebook Twitter Goodreads