Sunday, November 04, 2007

An extra hour to write

Michelle tagged me to write a post about what I would write if I had an extra hour every day to write. Hmm.

Now, the real answer is that I'd just use that hour to get my assignments done, but I have to assume that the spirit of this meme is to find out what our "heart projects" are.

Someone else asked me about that by e-mail recently. Well, technically, I asked myself. It went sort of like this: He asked me if there was anything no one ever asked me about my writing before that I wanted to be asked. I said I had never been asked if there was anything I wanted to write but wouldn't. So... he asked.

Anyway, what I explained then was that I had several ideas for books that I'd love to write, but wouldn't be commercial enough to justify the time I'd spend on them. Some Absolute Write readers might remember the time I went searching for a book that would be appropriate to teach my brother (who has Down syndrome) about dating. He had asked me for a book that would teach him how to talk to women, how to kiss... and I found nothing that seemed at all appropriate. There were books for boys just beginning puberty, or books about "how to score" for horndog adults, but nothing that seemed right for his situation.

I wanted to write that book. I know I could have interviewed psychologists who specialize in helping adults with intellectual disabilities and come up with something good, but the audience for it is just too small-- I'd wind up with a small advance from a specialized publisher, and that would take away from the time I have to spend writing "bigger" books and making a living. So I can't do it.

There's another project, though, that falls on the cusp of commercialism in my mind-- a "positive thoughts for pregnancy" book. I was terrified toward the end of pregnancy, and had to really find ways to stay positive. I mostly did so by asking people for good pregnancy stories, and by trying to focus on the "good" statistics (most babies are born healthy, most women don't have long-lasting complications from labor, etc.). But so many of the books I read, even the ones that were supposed to be inspirational, were totally scary. They contained labor horror stories, and because the baby wound up okay, it was supposed to be a positive story.

Anyway, that's probably what I'd work on if I had extra time. A pregnancy book that contains only happy thoughts for women who are scared about pregnancy. I do tend to write books that I wished I had myself when I was going through something (panic disorder, beginning a writing career, etc.).

For this meme, I tag Lori, Frank, and anyone else who wants to write about this topic!