Tuesday, 5 January 2016

My first writing-related blog post in which I set out to discuss my current writing project but which led me to discussing writing as a source of ultimate self-indulgence instead

One of my writing-related resolutions this year is to be a constant and committed blogger that I've always wanted to be but for some reason never could. Actually, now that I come to think of it, there are quite a few reasons for that, but this post is definitely not about them. With that in mind, I've started making a list of topics I could or should write about — I'm not sure how many I'll come up with, because, let's face it, what hasn't already been written, discussed and dissected over and over again by better-versed people out there (I did come up with ten at least!) — so I've decided that the best place to start is to write about the writing project I'm working on at the moment. After all, this is something that no one else but me can write about. Of course, it's pure self-indulgence to write about something that no one else but me can possibly be interested in at this point, but that should hardly stop me, right? I mean, writing in general is self-indulgence incarnate — for isn't it why most of us write — to indulge one craving or another? 

To write about the kind of romance set in another place and time that we will never experience in real life, isn't that an indulgence of our desires? Or to write about something that gnaws or terrifies us in order to face it and deal with it if only on the pages of a book? Well, one has to start somewhere. Or to write about some social injustice that makes us really angry in the face of our powerlessness and inability to change it in order to draw other people's attention to it, hoping that by writing about it we will finally manage to make a difference? I believe we indulge ourselves with every line that we put down and, as far as I'm concerned, that's one of the most harmless but at the same time satisfying ways of indulgence out there. Maybe you disagree that writing is an ultimate source of self-indulgence. I hope you do. I would welcome a discussion in the comments section. But maybe you agree? That's even better! Do tell me what needs and desires have you been indulging writing-wise lately? 

However, back to the topic at hand (boy, I do have an awful tendency to digress, don't I?), which, by the way, is once again all about me indulging myself and creating the kind of characters, settings and romance that I can only dream about in real life. I'm currently working on another novel set in Regency England (my fourth one in this genre if anyone cares to know) in a fictional town of B-. I'm writing it in dual perspective mode, one chapter from the hero's perspective, another chapter from the heroine's perspective, which I hope will create a nice bit of tension, curiosity and uncertainty. I want chapters to contradict each other and readers to find themselves at a loss as to who to believe or sympathise with, based on the contradictory nature of information they receive from different quarters and opposing camps. I'm experimenting a lot here and I know that I'll have to do a ton of research once I've finished the first draft, but for now I'm indulging myself in bringing two very unlikely people, separated by age disparity, financial situation and position in society, together. 

I think the fact that this is not the first time that I'm working on this novel gives me an indisputable advantage by making me feel like I've come back to a place that I know as intimately as I possibly can. I know the characters, their backstory, their current story, their surroundings, their passions, their pet peeves, their friends and foes, and, of course, the setting that exists only in my mind but is slowly taking shape on the pages of the book that is yet to be. I have some very colourful characters here, some of them caricatures of truly unpleasant people I've met in real life (I sense a pattern of self-indulgence here). Luckily for me, on previous occasion, just before I decided to abandon the project yet again, I had enough common sense and circumspection to write down a more or less detailed outline of the novel and, having been visualising it for such a long time, I find writing it less of a challenge and more of an — well — indulgence, really.

So, now tell me...

Writing — the ultimate source of self-indulgence. Agree or disagree? via @faridamestek (Click to tweet)


  1. I love the sound of your book. I'm a big fan of regency romances myself. I'd love to write one myself, but I'm so terrible when it comes to research that I'm not likely to do that anytime soon! I really like the idea of the dual POV though. Good luck with it!

    Hmm, that's an interesting question. For me, I don't think that writing is an indulgence as much as it is a source of escape and experience. Everyone needs somewhere to escape to when things are difficult, and for many people writing is that place to escape to, where they can be in control and they don't have to worry about real things. And there are so many experiences you can have through reading and writing, so much you can learn. I like to think of writing as a valuable way to experience and learn about the world when you're not able to go out and experience everything for yourself.

    1. I know what you mean about research. For this book, in particular, I have to research things that I not only have no interest in and find utterly boring but which I don't understand at all. Thankfully, I have enough knowledge of the era by now to write the first draft and only then to research what I don't know.

      But I find that reading books set at that time and place is the best and most enjoyable kind of research there is. I learn a lot each time I reread Jane Austen and our contemporaries make research even easier, because they actually explain things))

      Thank you very much for stopping by and sharing your thoughts! I enjoyed reading your view on writing as a way to escape, explore and experience things that are out of reach in real life.