Sunday, August 01, 2010

A writer pick-me-up

If you're ever feeling bad about your own writing, you should listen to this podcast with Brandon Sanderson. In it, you'll hear just a few sentences from the first novel Brandon ever wrote, back in 1994. For some unknown reason it remains unpublished. Well, technically speaking, it's pretty obvious why it's unpublished. While Brandon is now a well-known and well-respected writer who was asked to finish Robert Jordan's Wheel of Time, in 1994 he was just an amateur, and it shows. What this demonstrates is that even good writers start out pretty bad. The difference between a good writer and the bad writer he began as is time and practice. And if he can do it, so can you.

Update: And thanks to Mike Barker's transcript, here are the first few sentences from Brandon's novel:
The wind blew carelessly and freely. It caressed the stark dunes with its whispering touch, catching fine grains of sand between incorporeal fingers and bearing them forth like hundreds of tiny charioteers. The sand, bone white in color as if it had been bleached by the sun's harsh stare, seemed to shine for a second with a sharp inner light. Then it dulled in color to a deep black.
And as you can see, Brandon's come a long way.

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