And by a break, I mean taking a break.
Since I began writing I’d always considered myself a fiction writer. The most fascinating aspect of writing for me was creating a digestible reality. Telling the truth and having it heard and absorbed. Fiction can change a person’s heart–their ideas. Sure, other avenues of writing can as well, but I don’t think Dickens would have been as successful displaying his troubles with his society as vividly in another writing form.
The snob in me says poetry has a greater power. It elevates the mind in just a few lines.
So I come to a crossroad and say certain messages are stronger in certain forms. Or hey, maybe it depends upon the writer.
I’ve discovered a flip in my writing form and I wonder…why do I feel guilty for it?
I’ve long considered myself a fiction writer, but for months I’ve put poetry above fiction. All my time and energy goes into my poetry.
Paul Auster said something similar happened to him while he was in college (or was it after?) He was a fiction writer whose fiction just wasn’t coming together. He began writing poetry, which is what he first published. Later he went back to fiction and was able to click the puzzle in.
Fiction is my first love, but poetry has taken my heart. I’m not abandoning it, I’m just giving poetry precedence.
Sometimes it takes the learning of poetry to create a great fiction author. Maybe I’m one of those people who needs poetry first.
But those of you who have felt the same guilt at switching or taking on a new form of writing–don’t. What’s most important is good writing. So, whatever you do, just practice until you can say you do it well.