WRITERS GOTTA WRITE. I GOTTA LISTEN
I like to write.
No, I really like to write. I like building a world in my head and seeing if I can move it to paper and have it look as cool s it did rattling around my brain. Sometimes it does. Often it doesn’t and that’s actually more fun, because it means I can keep on building that world to make it better.
But the thing I like to do when I’m not writing (or reading) is listen to other writers talk about what they are writing and reading. One of my favorites is Chuck Wendig (@ChuckWendig on Twitter. Do, please, go follow him.) Chuck writes urban fantasy – always profane, often violent, sometimes really violent, and occasionally humorous – but filled with some of the richest, grittiest, emotional writing ever. Check out his Miriam Black books Blackbirds and Mockingbird for starts. As a palate cleanser look for his Dinocalypse books coming soon which are much cleaner, but oh so much fun.
Urban fantasy is a genre, frankly, I only got interested in because Wendig is so damn captivating with his tweets and even more so with his blog at terribleminds where he dishes out really, really good (and dare I say it, sometimes inspirational) writing advise. He also curses a lot and can spin the hell out of a whacked-out metaphor. So there’s that.
One of my favorite shows right now is the Sundance Channel show “The Writer’s Room” where the host sits down with the creator, some of the writers, and a star from a popular TV show and they just talk about what goes into breaking stories and turning ideas into TV. So far they’ve done “Breaking Bad”, “Dexter”, “Parks and Recreation” and “The New Girl”.
I subscribe to a number of podcasts: The Nerdist, The Nerdist Writers Panel, Book Riot, and others. I like the ones centered on writers the best. Others, like Thrilling Adventure Hour, or even the NPR show Fresh Air have lots of great stuff I enjoy, but I’ll still zero in on the writers. My iPod scrolling is like, “Yeah, yeah, interview with the doctor who cured cancer. Oh, another episode about how the US just got sold to China which is turning it into condos. Boring. Blah blah…ooh, Neil Gaiman!”
Side note: I’ll listen to Neil Gaiman talk about anything anytime. His voice is awesome. He could describe the workings of the large intestine and make it sound magical.
The special features are my favorite parts of DVDS. I love this stuff.
I love it because (1) listening to people who are passionate about what they do is just fun. Even if I’ve never seen that show or movie or play they’re involved with, I love hearing them talk about it; (2) it’s also infectious. It makes you passionate about what you do.
As much as I’m enjoying the final eight episodes of “Breaking Bad”, I’m enjoying the “after-show” called “Talking Bad” where Chris Hardwick interviews the creator and stars of the show about what just happened on the episode that night just as much.
I may have a problem.