I have started to write the second part of my book which introduces the reader to a second main character, Daena. This woman had been banished from the village of Tarun 30 years prior to the present time for abducting the twin sister of another main character. Daena is a troubled woman, tormented by visitors and voices, and writing her is a fun experience because her perspective on the world around her is so unique.
Whereas my main character, Ohlen — the focus of part I — is somewhat straightforward, Daena is complex. By today’s enlightened perspective she is clearly mentally ill, but in the age of the story she is visited and controlled by sinister forces. Daena is also an extremely tough woman, demonstrated by just how much crap she goes through in her life and still comes through alive; severely scarred, both physically and emotionally, but alive nonetheless.
The challenge I’m facing now is which writing god do I serve in my approach. Do I write in a way that is a purely creative expression of myself? Or do I write in a way that fits the formula for what will sell? Great artists and musicians and authors are not commended for their ability to masterfully fit a known formula that everyone finds familiar and comforting. But at the same time they don’t deviate from familiar patterns so drastically that they cannot be understood. I am facing a fork in the road and I am torn deciding which path to take. To the left is the path my creativity urges me to follow, my own path. To the right is the path prescribed and documented and mapped out by countless others, a relatively sure thing but not a path that appeals to me.
It will be interesting to see which one I take. Even I don’t know at this point.