For me, I like creating new adventures to explore in my YA short stories. I like finding ways to get my kids—in the stories, in the stories!—into trouble. Of course, I always find a way out for them. Sometimes I need to be ingenious about it. But that’s the fun of story writing. Creating a believable world and populating it with genuine characters the reader can connect to.
It’s not only the sci-fi and fantasy writers who need to create a world for their stories. All writers need to create a logical world where characters and creatures alike live out a storyline. I’m a concrete thinker, so my stories are based in reality, yet I control what happens. I love nature and mountains and forests and hiking, so some of my stories take place on mountaintops or in forests. But the beauty of fiction is that I can create the tension; I can create what needs to happen to make the story interesting. I can create the inner struggle of the protagonist. And I can create a satisfying ending, because it doesn’t need to be true.
I also write memoir. While the writer knows what happens in memoir because it’s a narrative from life, it still needs to be written like a story and offer insight. I believe this makes memoir a bit more difficult to write than fiction.
What do you think? Is fiction easier to write than memoir where everything needs to be true?
Thanks so much for stopping by Adventures in Writing and leaving a note. This post was written for the Insecure Writer’s Support Group. We post on the first Wednesday of every month. To join us, or learn more about the group, click HERE.
24 thoughts on “Insecure Writer’s Support Group: What is your favorite aspect of being a writer?”
It might seem easier to write about yourself in the sense that you were there and lived it, but I think it would be easier to write fiction. I always loved writing picture prompts on state tests when I was a kid. I never liked writing about myself.
I think memoir is harder because of the possiblity of hurting someone's feelings – I know that sounds odd, but fiction gives me the freedom to write about a variety of topics and characters in the safety net of "pretend."
Hi Victoria … I'll write memoir anytime over fiction … I can't dream that one up .. memoir I can natter happily away – well I do in my posts … so enjoy both if that's the way you write .. cheers Hilary
And "seem" it is, Michelle. Memoir is more than just writing about yourself; it's transforming that memory into a story with fiction elements and insight. Sometimes when the page is blank and you can create anything, it is easier. Thanks so much for visiting Adventures in Writing and leaving a note. It's appreciated. All the best to you.
This is true, Tyrean. Memoirists need to be very careful not to offend people with their story. Fiction stories always have that note in the front that says something like: any likeness of characters to real people is completely coincidence. Thanks so much, Tyrean, for visiting Adventures in Writing. Please stop by again. All the best to you!
Thank you so much for this, Hilary. I do believe that both fiction and memoir have their good points. It's just that sometimes in memoir, I stress trying to find the insight that is missing or how to craft the memory into story. Always a pleasure seeing you here at Adventures in Writing.
Although I write fiction, I'm also in the process of writing a non-fiction book.
It's harder in the sense that you have to be more on point…and more believable too! So maybe it IS harder.
Happy IWSG Day!
With fiction, you have to create everything, whether it's reality based or not. A memoir's events are already set. But I think it would be more difficult because of the emotion involved in writing it. You'd have to be totally honest and let it all hang out, and since it's personal, that would be a struggle.
I personally think fiction is more challenging than a memoir. In a memoir, most of the core is there, only the presentation and insight has to be structured. But in fiction, everything from bone to flesh has to be created from scratch. Happy writing!
That's true, Michelle! You need to make a focused point in non-fiction, especially memoir. And everything must seem believable and real. Thanks so much for visiting Adventures in Writing and leaving a note. It's greatly appreciated. Please stop by again.
Yes it is, Diane. Total honesty is draining. Thanks so much for visiting Adventures in Writing. I hope you feel welcome here. Your comment is truly appreciated. Please stop by again. All the best to you.
Hello and welcome to Adventures in Writing, Brajadulal! This is true. You start from scratch in fiction. However, in memoir, you start with your heart. Happy writing to you too, sir. Thanks so much for stopping by Adventures in Writing and leaving a note. It is greatly appreciated. Please stop by again.
My first book was a memoir that took 7 years and a lot of tears. But it hooked me on the writing process. I prefer fiction. I'm like you, I love the creativity process of making a make-believe world.
Bravo to you, Joylene, for having a memoir published! Many times memoirs are full of tears, if not from content then from frustration in finding the insight and getting the material to flow as a story. Your fiction books have intriguing plots. I still feel that it is easier if you can make the whole thing up. Thanks so much for your comment and for visiting Adventures in Writing. It's greatly appreciated. All the best with your new release.
I think writing a memoir would be difficult because, let's face it, my day to day life is not that exciting. And considering the he%* I put my characters through to make their lives interesting to readers, well, I'll stick with boring.
Boring in real life is definitely much better, Tamara. However in memoir, the writer looks at the lesson [the point of the memoir story] she learned and the difficulty it took to learn it. Not every memoir deals with life and death issues, thank God. Always a pleasure seeing you here at Adventures in Writing, Tamara. All the best, my dear.
The creating of those worlds, whether fiction or non-fiction, is a gift and a joy for you and others.
Mary at Play off the Page
We always have a world to create whether real or not.
Not really sure which of the two is more difficult to write…
Hello and welcome to Adventures in Writing, Mary! Yes world creation can be a joy, although sometimes it's difficult. It is at the crux of our story. Thank you for leaving a note here at Adventures in Writing. Please stop by again. All the best to you.
Always a pleasure seeing the chief of Insecure Writers Support Group here at Adventures in Writing. It's true, sir. All writing can be difficult at times. The world needs to come first. Then go looking for characters to populate it. Thanks again for your note.
I think both are hard to write. You have to make it interesting for readers in both.
Yes you do, Nas. To get readers, the story, the plot-line, the characters need to be interesting. And most definitely, writing good stories is difficult. Always a pleasure seeing you here at Adventures in Writing. Thanks so much for your comment. All the best to you!
Memoir is harder for me to write than fiction, simply because I know that I may remember things differently from someone else in my family and I can just hear it now: "That's NOT how that happened!" With fiction, no one knows how it happened until I write it down (or until my characters show me what happens!) Thanks for stopping by my blog on IWSG Day!
Hello and welcome to Adventures in Writing, Jen! My pleasure stopping by your blog. I'm meeting and connecting to so many wonderful writers with IWSG.
In memoir, the only way to move forward, sometimes, is to remember you are writing YOUR truth in a certain memory. But I agree that in fiction, no one can pester you about how something happened as the entire story is created by you. All the best to you, Jen. Thanks so much for stopping by Adventures in Writing. Please stop by again!