Welcome to the 5pm post in the twelve-hour #Awethors Takeover!
Don't miss out on the giveaway of a guest post and promotion on Michael J. Elliott's writer-centered blog at the bottom of the post!
Celebrating The Get Down With The #Awethors event! Go to the Facebook group page to discover prizes, challenges, your favourite new authors and more!
Incorporating Interests & Hobbies into Writing
by Michael J. Elliott
As authors we wear two hats, that of creators and that of readers.
Like Yin and Yang, the two are inseparable. It's highly unlikely you would've started your journey
as an author without having a a deep and abiding love of books.
So are you using your personal reading to its best advantage?
Most of us have hobbies and interests. Do you collect antiques?, Perhaps you have an interest in fashion from the 1960's or you may enjoy creating and collecting pottery.
For me, it's Greek Mythology, Ancient Rome, Tarot (and New Age.) and Feng Shui. Whatever your interests, at some stage you would've undoubtedly read something about your hobby, whether it was a magazine, an article or (I hope!), a book.
Twenty three years ago, I decided to teach myself the Tarot. I practically devoured every book on the subject I could lay my hands on. A few years later I was making a very good living as a professional Tarot Reader.
During my studies I learnt that the Four suits of the Tarot ( Staves, Cups, Swords and Pentacles/Coins.) each corresponded to one of the Four Elements, (Fire, Earth, Air and Water.). From my interest in New Age I also learnt that the Four Elements are actually considered low level spiritual beings that have their own names.
So what has this got to do with writing?
Quite simply, my interests have provided me with a wealth of information which will make my books ring with an air of authenticity and knowledge, for example, I'm now outlining a series of four books based on the concept of the Four Elements being enslaved and used against humanity.
But Michael, I'm a Romance writer, how does this help me?
Very easily! Let's assume you're a romance writer who plays golf. You have the perfect scenario for your new book, handsome pro golfer falls for a waitress at his golf club. (My apologises if this plot line makes romance writers cringe, it's not my genre lol.). Even if you didn't use this as your plot, you can still incorporate your knowledge of the game in many different ways, golf fashion, terminology, history etc. Were I a golf playing horror writer I could think of many different ways to incorporate my love of the game into my writing, a haunted exclusive golf resort, a serial killer who uses golf clubs as his murder weapon etc. You get the idea.
The point I'm trying to make is that you have a mother load of knowledge and information at your fingertips and if you aren't using your hobbies and interests in your writing you're missing out on a gold mine of inspiration.
A Quick Writing Exercise.
Try this when you're doing some free form writing. Write down a list of your hobbies, now try to find a link between your books and your hobbies.
- What immediately comes to mind?
- Is there something that jumps out out you, perhaps a hobby reference in your book you hadn't noticed?
- Can you incorporate what you've jotted down into your current project?
You'll be amazed at how much information you've been carrying around begs to be let out.
I have to finish up now, I've suddenly had the urge to write a story about a haunted golf resort...I wonder where that came from?
Michael J. Elliott
Michael J. Elliott is an Australian author who has been writing 'dark' stories since his early school days. His Primary (U.S. Elementary.) Headmistress described him as “a second Alfred Hitchcock”.
He continued writing in High School, mostly scripts for Media Studies classes. Michael briefly attended College majoring in Media Studies where he wrote scripts for short films and radio advertisements as well as contributing a regular column to the student newspaper. Michael's biggest writing success came from writing a comedy sketch which was used on a television special. Michael has written revues for local charity amateur theatre groups as well as receiving kudos for his performances in them.
Michael currently has two short stories out, Dinner For Two, a post apocalyptic horror story and Mr Westacott's Christmas, a 'dark drama', both available on Amazon. His third short story, Sharpshooter, will be released on all platforms shortly. He is currently working on his collection of short stories, Portraits Of Dread.
Michael loves hearing from his readers, you can connect with him at any of the following:
Twitter - https://twitter.com/thewriterbloke
Facebook - https://www.facebook.com/horrorbloke
The Writers Emporium - http://thewritersemporium.blogspot.co.uk/
Author web site - http://www.mjewrites.com/
Amazon author page - http://www.amazon.com/Michael-J-Elliott/e/B00T3UMGQ4