Embracing Challenges

Yesterday, Opinionated Man issued a challenge in his HarsH ReaLiTy blog for fellow bloggers to step outside their element. This gave me pause to consider really stepping up to challenges in a number of different ways.

As well as being an avid reader, in my younger days, I was also a prolific writer. I even spent around four years as a newspaper reporter, though nothing else I’ve written outside that scope has ever been published.

In the past few years, I’ve reconsidered a number of times returning to the pen and paper, just as I’ve returned to books and reading.

Today, my own writing aspirations are the topic of my blog, rather than my reviews of free books I’m reading. And perhaps, just perhaps, Opinionated Man has spurred even more of a challenge than a single blog post – maybe he has also encouraged me to follow my further writing goals.

The life changing event that first encouraged me to return to writing was when a close friend had a stroke. Doctors gave her husband very little hope for recovery, but I had full faith in my friend’s strength and she’s made almost a complete comeback. Through the experience, I learned a lot about how the brain works and how important speech and language are to our very day to day lives. And I contemplated a return to writing as a way to share what I have learned, in hopes that I might be able to help others who have dealt with issues that might seem insurmountable.

In my writing in the past, I’ve embraced a number of genres – from poetry to prose, from fiction to non-fiction. Reconsidering my potential as an author, I’ve also thought about a number of opportunities – children’s books seem to be a quick turn-around and with two young children in my household, a boy and a girl, I’d have a built-in sounding board for what stories work. I’ve also considered a few non-fiction topics, from personal experiences and carry-overs from my newswriting days. And since I was young I considered dabbling in a bit of young-adult or even adult fiction.

So instead of offering my opinions, today I’ll ask for opinions from my blog readers – What are you interested in seeing from a new author? More fiction or non-fiction? If an author embraces a variety of genres, should they use a unique pen name for each, or write under the same name so that their works are easily identifiable as the works of a single person?

I encourage comments on this topic, which I’m sure will influence not only what I write, but also what I read in my future free reading!