Tuesday, 11 October 2011

Write What You Know—Kurt Chambers

There is lots of advice for writers out there, and some of it is repeated over and over again by many writers, publishers and agents. This leads me to think that this advice is worth taking onboard. One quote that comes up very often is, write what you know. This might seem like an obvious statement, but very good advice nonetheless.

I spent seven years writing a series of Middle Grade Fantasy books, my Truth Teller series. There are three books in total; Truth Teller, The Wrath of Siren and Favian’s Law. I love these stories. They came straight from the heart and were always something I wanted to write. I worked for years to bring them to a publishable standard and entered the submission process. After many knock-backs, I came to the conclusion they weren’t the most marketable novels despite the amazing reactions I received from my target audience beta readers and the members of my critique group. So, I shelved them. I turned my attention to writing for the market. Luckily, the novel I wrote turned out to be a cracking story and very popular among my young readers. So, I tried to write another marketable novel. That’s when I hit a brick wall.

I had lost my way. I spent so much time trying to get published, I lost interest and almost gave up. It was a mistake. While I took a break from my writing, I realised where I had gone wrong. Write what you know! That’s what they say. So, that is exactly what I’m going to do. I went back to doing what I wanted to do and have just started writing a new novel. It’s book four to my Truth Teller series, Lost Magic. It’s so nice to be back with my old characters. I missed them so much. My series may never get published due to market forces, but I don’t care. I’m writing what I know, and I’m falling in love with writing all over again.


  1. Good for you! It takes a lot of courage to stick with your original ideas and intentions when the publishing industry is involved. Passionate writing always has an audience and home.

  2. Hi Saumya :)

    The publishing industry does take the fun out of it all, I must say. I understand they are a business like any other business, and are really up against it right now with all the new media devices and such. But writing should come from the heart, not for the market in my humble view :)

    Thank you so much for taking the time to leave a comment, Saumya.

  3. You haven't not been published because your novels aren't marketable, they just haven't arrived on the right agents desk yet. Nothing more.

    Don't get hung up on what other people say either - good or bad. It's all about perspective. And at the end of the day, if you believe in your work, an agent will too. You'll see :)

    Oh, and another thing, without the cloud there would be no silver lining :)

    As you were :)

  4. Can't wait to read book 4! Your characters are awesome. I missed them too! So happy you started writing again. It would have been such a waste of talent if you hadn't.

  5. haha!! Thanks, Wendy :) I'll consider myself told off :D

  6. Thanks, Annie <3 Your my biggest fan :D