it’s the same old story

I read this blog entry by Florence Catherine Gardner way back in September, where she talks about writers really having only one story in them.  Each book they write is simply a retelling of the same story.


Here I think I’m all creative and stuff, and really, I’m stuck in a Groundhog Day loop.

The first stage of writer adulthood is realizing that there is nothing new under the sun.  The only newness you can bring to writing is your execution, not the subject matter or even the slant.

But the second stage is realizing that your writing–your deep writing that comes from dark places–will inevitably draw from the same well. It makes sense that you will tell the same story.  Over.  And over.

It’s easy to look at others’ writing and see the pattern.  Importance of family.  God’s indifference.  The danger of centralizing power in the state.  Whatever.

I’ve spent this week, when I haven’t really been able to write, thinking about my reoccurring story.  What fascinates me about human relationships?  What am I drawn to write about?  How does it connect to my own experiences?  The answer has surprised me, and also been baldly obvious.

Hell no, I’m not going to just tell you.  That’s what novels are for.


About Lisha Cauthen

Lisha Cauthen writes YA novels for guys that girls like to read too.

Posted on December 29, 2009, in writing and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink. 3 Comments.

  1. Maybe it is just retelling the same idea but creativity is about finding new ways to say it. Good luck with your writing.

  2. I hope I can keep finding new ways to tell the same old story. I’m only on round one right now and I want to do it a whole lot more. Nice post, thanks!

  3. As usual your ending made me laugh.

    So where’s your link to your article on Rx for Writers?

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