Born in a Treacherous Time / writers / writing

#IWSG–Am I surprised by my writing?

writers groupThis post is for Alex Cavanaugh’s Insecure Writers Support Group (click the link for details on what that means and how to join. You will also find a list of bloggers signed up to the challenge that are worth checking out. The first Wednesday of every month, we all post our thoughts, fears or words of encouragement for fellow writers.

This month’s question: Have you ever surprised yourself with your writing?

Well, yes, by the mere fact of DOING it. I never thought of myself as a  writer but life had other plans. Here’s what happened: I wanted to learn everything possible about man’s primeval roots. I read and researched and checked out every possible book from the library. Then I went to Notre Dame’s massive library and finally Washington DC’s Library of Congress. But I was unsatisfied. Research was good with facts but not emotions, reactions, planning–stuff that couldn’t be preserved in rocks and earth.

Which is when it hit me: What I wanted was the storyline of my ancient man’s life, his descriptive setting, characterizations of all cohabitants in his homeland, and a plot that told their dramatic life-threatening story.

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I’ve been working on that 22 years, due out next summer, but along the way I found I enjoyed the process of telling a story and I’ve been at it ever since. What a surprise.

How about you?

More IWSG articles:

Pet Peeves About Writing

One Valuable Lesson From Writing

It can’t be true, but research says it is!


Jacqui Murray is the author of the popular Building a Midshipman, the story of her daughter’s journey from high school to United States Naval Academy, and the thrillers, To Hunt a Sub and  Twenty-four DaysShe is also the author/editor of over a hundred books on integrating tech into education, adjunct professor of technology in education, webmaster for four blogs, an Amazon Vine Voice book reviewer,  a columnist for TeachHUB, monthly contributor to Today’s Author and a freelance journalist on tech ed topics. You can find her books at her publisher’s website, Structured Learning.

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63 thoughts on “#IWSG–Am I surprised by my writing?

  1. Pingback: #IWSG — No to NaNoWriMo | WordDreams...

  2. Pingback: Books, Books, Books: What Have You Read, What Have You Written? | Carrie Rubin

  3. How interesting! Thanks for sharing a little bit about your journey. I have always loved to write, but have only been able to sell factual articles so far. Writing in two different languages, I’m always surprised by the vocabulary that comes to mind. Sometimes I get stuck and can only think of the words in the language I’m not currently writing in, but at other times, the writing flows much better.

    Kathrin — http://mycupofenglishtea.wordpress.com

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Wow Jacqui, that’s fascinating. And 22 years should prove a masterpiece! The most surprised I am by my writing is when I get inspiration in the wee hours of night and look back at that writing and say, “Wow, did I write that?” 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  5. When I was younger, I wanted to be a writer, but I thought you had to have some sort of “magic” to do it. (Like painting or singing.) I guess you do, but I didn’t realize that you also need to put in a heck of a lot of work to get better at it. (Probably the same with painting and singing!)

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Your upcoming book sounds FASCINATING. 22 years isn’t so long, considering the complex subject! I love the way writing takes us away from ourselves and places us in another world totally unexpected. I am always surprised by the words that come forth when I begin…

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Hi Jacqui – human kind is some man … and he’s travelled some or should I say journeyed. That’s great you’re almost finished and have a publication time … I look forward to reading. You’ll have learnt loads along the process too … that’s what’s great about blogging albeit I’m not writing a novel, nor indeed ever thought about it, but blogging suits me – as I’m constantly teaching myself. Excellent and you’re here for us giving us techie tips … always so useful and books to read etc … cheers Hilary

    Liked by 1 person

  8. writing fiction fills a hole in my life I never knew existed before I began writing. Now I’m hooked, and the addiction is getting worse. Funny, back in school I never would have guessed that I’d like writing.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. One of the great things about fiction is that it can fill in the gaps between what we know and don’t know. For example when researching for a fantasy story earlier this year I discovered that there are only 2 or 3 recorded descriptions of Viking hairstyles. Looking deeper back into pre-history I’d imagine there’ll be far more things we don’t know about their lives, but these were people every bit as human as us… It definitely sounds like an interesting project!

    Liked by 1 person

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