Challenge,  On Writing

Writing Quote From Joe Lansdale

Wonder Where I Have Heard This Before?

Joe Lansdale said on Facebook today…

“The writer who thinks the whole purpose of writing is suffering isn’t one I’m much interested in. The one that tells a story for the joy of telling it is the one I’m interested in. Writing can be hard, but it shouldn’t be miserable. Some days it might be, but on the whole it should be an exciting, if occasionally, frustrated adventure. A story is made better by style, character, dialogue. All the tools that make it work, but the most important component is joyful passion and a willingness to improve on your passion to make it yours and to have it read well. I like to go to work with a certain excitement that gives me pleasure, and hopefully will give the same to the reader. We are not all pleased by the same thing, but if I can write for myself with joy and enthusiasm, I’m confident readers will feel that in the work and some of them will share that enthusiasm and be swept along by the story. I enjoy writing as well as having written. I enjoy finding my story as I go, figuring it out, and putting it down for myself, and no one else, with the confidence I will find some similar souls out there that enjoy the sort of tale I have told.”

I tend to agree with a lot that Joe says. I believe the secret to writing, publishing, and continuing to write and publish is having fun. Doesn’t mean writing and publishing are not challenging or sometimes stressful. But people pay good money to get on a rollercoaster to be stressed and thrilled and have fun. That’s writing every novel for me. I start off not having a clue where I am going, enjoy the excitement of finding out, the stress of the fear of failing, and with the certain belief that I will end up right back on the platform laughing and ready to go again.

Joe calls his writing work, I call my writing pure entertainment and fun.


  • Philip

    Another thing about Lansdale, which backs up his points about having fun, is that you’ll notice he also writes in a bunch of different genres. Seems he doesn’t but into the specialist myth of sticking to one genre and “market.” He follows stories where they take him, using his enjoyment as a guide. That’s another thing that sounds quite familiar to those of us who follow you, Dean.