My uncle has been messaging me again. Although he knows now that I write, and the nature of what I write, he’s still after me to do “cosy” (“cozy”) crime novels:
If you don’t know what that means, they are these types of books:
And that despite me telling him several months ago that I couldn’t do them and don’t want to do them. But he won’t stop.
When I was having my eyes tested a couple of weeks ago, my occupation came up. The optometrist asked the subject, and I explained “travel romance fiction” books. He joked that I must get lots of questions at parties, laughing he gets people he’d just met at gatherings, drinks in hand, seeking an instant diagnosis from him on some eye issue or other.
Another “Agatha Christie” I’ll never be. I don’t even want to try. I certainly won’t waste my time with that genre when I know full well I’d do an “amateurish” to embarrassing job on such a book at best.
My uncle has written HarperCollins (and others’) published crime novels. (Much like my novels’ “Uncle Bill” character. An astounding coincidence, I know! 😉 ) I’m sure that’s what must drive his advice to me: he knows “crime” and feels my style is well-suited to those types of stories, and believes he could help some.
And that’s generous of him, and I do appreciate it. He must feel he can’t offer much advice on what I’m writing about now; but that’s fine: I’ve not been badgering him for assistance. (There is also such as thing as seeking and/or accepting too much advice.) This is 100 percent my gig. It took me two years before I’d even worked up the courage to tell him what I have been authoring:
I’m not messing around and intend to work on these sorts of novels until I feel I have nothing new to say on this subject. I’m an absolute believer in writing about what you “know” and what intensely interests you, because in doing that you stand the BEST chance to do full justice to readers willing to part with hard-earned money for your work.
There are so many crime novelists out there. Many are frighteningly excellent. (My uncle is, and not just in my opinion.) I could hardly hope to add anything in that genre worthy of anyone’s notice. Any effort would be a, uh, “criminal” waste of everyone’s time.
My best advice to any prospective writer is this: You have to ask yourself hard questions about yourself, and answer them honestly, before you ever first dare put a finger to a keyboard.
Have a good [grumble, grumble] Monday. 🙂