Writing 101

People tell me all the time that there is no way they could ever write a book. If you had asked me twenty-five years ago, I would have said the same thing.  The turning point for me came in the form of a problem to be solved. I was teaching my Tourism Planning course, which necessitated loading students in a van (or two) and driving with them for hours, usually to some sea- or lake-side destination. Several trips later, my students would have a grasp of what made tourism tick in one case study berg. One day, my department chair approached and told me that the field trips were too expensive; I needed to find another way of teaching the course. This was a major dilemma: how was I going to provide students with equal exposure to the inner workings of a community without visiting multiple times? The solution hit me square between the eyes: I’d write a novel–better yet–a murder mystery. Students would learn all about a fictional community, including problems, prospects, and people, while solving an entertaining whodunnit. I’ve never ascribed to the tenet, “Necessity is the Mother of Invention.”  However, I do believe that, faced with the proper motivation, we are all problem solvers at heart. So, whether you have a book list longer than Tom Clancy’s, or are writing your first book, tell us what motivated you to begin this fabulous journey.

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One Comment on “Writing 101

  1. Hi Mark!
    I’ve been attempting to write for quite a few years now, starting mystery novels, then giving up simply out of lack of interest and time.
    I’m at it again but this time I expect to see it through to the end. Why? I’m only getting older, life is getting shorter, and I think I know the subject matter well (aging and death). Getting up in years makes motivation a heck of a lot easier!

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