“Quiet” writers

The other day, Jan O’Hara wrote a great post about “quiet” books and writers at one of my favorite sites, Writer Unboxed. I’ve been thinking about it since I read it.  How does a “quiet” writer get through in such a loud, buzzy world?  Especially if you’re a quiet writer with a quiet book?

First, a disclaimer.  In real life, I am NOT at all a quiet person.  Quite the opposite, in fact.  I talk loudly and I laugh loudly—a lot.  But in my fiction, I’m quiet.  My sense of humor is there, but it’s not slapstick.  It’s found in smaller observations, sometimes as sarcasm in a character’s voice, and sometimes in the absurdity of a situation.  I like to take the expected and slip in unexpected details.

When I younger and was first playing around with the idea of being a writer, I didn’t think I could do it, although I’d been encouraged by every teacher I’d had and friends who had read my work.  But I was surrounded by writers, and they all seemed to deal with BIG, IMPORTANT IDEAS AND PEOPLE.  And I found myself lacking in that area.

What I wrote about back then, and continue to write about now, is people who aren’t big and important.  There are no explosions.  No murders, no vampires, no mass destruction of humankind.  In fact, the people on my pages lead pretty ordinary lives, and the best thing my readers have told me is that they feel as though they know my characters.  This never fails to make me smile.

But to get back to the original question: How do quiet writers get heard?  Especially when there are so many others cheerleading loudly for themselves and for their stories with a quick synopsis on their Twitter accounts, Facebook fan pages, and blogs?

I don’t have the answer to that question, so I’m putting it out there for others to help me answer.  I suspect that I’m going to have to get louder.


2 responses to this post.

  1. Your humor sounds more British or Canadian. Fortunately, many people appreciate kind of writing, if they can find it.

    I don’t the answers, except it seems smart for writers of like mind to band together in their efforts. Wouldn’t you love to see a quiet book convention? 😉

    Thanks for the shout-out. Much appreciated!


  2. Jan, thank you for your post. It gave me a lot to think about and it also made me realize how I’m not so alone, based on all of the replies you received.

    I love the idea of a quiet book convention! I’d better get my book completed soon.


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