I have written a book! This really surprises me. Why? Because I never believed I had the imagination, or the determination to write a book, and that was before I knew exactly how much determination is required. So, where did this idea that I could write a book come from? I clearly remember as a young reader, thinking I’d love to be able to write something that moved readers emotionally, the way some books moved me. I love books with characters I care about, and when those characters make me cry, it feels wonderful. I connected strongly with the characters in these books. Normally, if something sad happens, I don’t consider it wonderful, so, why does that change when I’m reading a novel, listening to a song, or watching a movie?
Does this bizarre reaction means there’s something wrong with me? No, I know I’m not alone on this, so I researched the issue and discovered a small study on the matter: Silvia Knobloch-Westerwick, an associate professor in the School of Communication at Ohio State, and lead author of the research study, concluded that watching a tragic movie can make people happier with their lives in the short term. “Tragedy-induced sadness instigates self-focused thoughts about one’s own life situation and socio-focused thoughts about one’s relationships with others, which in turn increase life happiness and subsequently tragedy enjoyment,” Knobloch-Westerwick concluded in the study. “Participants focused on themselves when they compared their own lives to the fates of the characters in tragic movies.” Whatever the science behind the fact, those thoughts I had about writing a story people would connect to emotionally were fanciful daydreams for many years. However, maybe they were responsible for the beginning steps that led me down the path to this, my first novel. It didn’t happen quickly, I had a lot to learn. Little did I know at the beginning of this journey, how challenging it would be, but I was keen. I devoured books about writing, sought advice and went to seminars. This blog is about those wonderful experiences. Do you like sad stories? If so, why do you think they appeal to you? If you’re a writer, have you always felt like a writer, or is it something that has come as a surprise to you, as it has to me. Tell me about it.