Julie's Quest

Hello, and welcome to my blog. My blog is about the trials and tribulations of writing, where we celebrate successes and commiserate our near misses. We tell it like it is here and will do our very best to help you on the road to being published and pick you up after the rejections (they will come!) Whether you are a professional or amateur writer you will find something useful here.

I hope you enjoy reading my posts and will visit again soon.

Happy Writing

Julie Phillips - freelance writer - member of the Association of Freelance Writers - member of the Society of Authors

Sunday, 29 July 2012

How do you do?

I love people. This is a good trait to have being a writer! You can't really write about people if you hate them. Well, you could try, but it might be difficult to remain impartial and objective. I've been incredibly lucky to meet some fantastic, interesting and special people with my writer's hat on. (I don't really have a writer's hat, but I think I'd quite like to have one!) They've all had such wonderful stories to tell and it's been such a privilege to have had the opportunity to listen to them.

People are a writer's staple diet. People read magazines and what they want to read about in the magazines they read are articles about other people. People who have the same interests as they do or people from totally different backgrounds - people are generally nosey with writers being the most beaky! It's part of a writer's job description.

If you're stuck for inspiration here are a few places to look for victims - I mean people you might like to interview.

1. The Internet
2. The local paper
3. Local library
4. Your neighbours or their family/friends
5. Your work colleagues / their family/ friends
6. Your old school/college/university
7. Social networking sites
8. Local businesses
9. Local groups
10. Charities
11. Local dignitaries
12. Forthcoming local big events/anniversaries
13. Emergency services
14. Local legends
15. Church/Parish records
16. Community magazines
17. Tourist Information Centres
18. Local TV/radio
19. Local archives
20. Music festivals/local bands/musicians

These are just a fraction of sources. There are many. many more.  These should keep you busy for a while! So get out there and go and meet some people. You never know what they might have to say to you, or what gems they have for you to write about. There's a story (or several) in everyone .........

Julie xx


Paula R C Readman said...

What a great posting! Thank you for sharing it with us. I needed somewhere to check out my next victim :-)

Nari said...

You are so right, people are the key. One of he privileges of working in care with the learning disabled is that I get to meet so many different people with different worldviews, abilities and experiences of the world, which really expands my limited vision of what life is like. To begin with, I saw my job as an enemy to my writing because it stole all my time, but I am beginning to see it as a great resource of human emoion and experience.
Thanks for your post. Sometimes we can get so caught up in our own characters and world that we forget the greatest 'research' we can do - talking to actual real people who have so much to say.
Nari X

susanjanejones said...

Hi Julie,we've just been on a market in the midlands. It's great for accents and characters. We got soaked in a downpour of rain, the man on the next stall kept telling his customers 'I won't charge yer fer the werter on the stuff.' It was the way he said it made me laugh, apart from that he tied a carrier bag like a shower cap on his head and wore a bin bag, yes he really did, with his head and arms sticking out. A lady the other side kept telling people, 'Everything yew can see is a pewund.' It cheered up after a while though, gave me lots to write about, I love them all.

Julie P said...

Hi, Paula, and thank you. I'm sure it won't be long before you can source your next character!
I fnd people who annoy me are excellent targets!
Julie xx

Julie P said...

Hi, Nari. You're right - the people we work with and those we come into contact with through our jobs are an excellent source of inspiration for our writing.

I tried being a full time writer but felt that something was missing and so took up work again and it's helped me. Just knowing that I have a regular monthly income in eases the pressure too. My writing is better for it!

Julie xx

Julie P said...

Hi Susan,

I love regional accents! The people from different areas all have their little funny quirks and ways, don't they!

Here in Telford they say things like - marra tata jockey blade! No idea what it means - we also say po-el for pool, making it a two syllable word. And also dow-en for down, row-end for round, etc!

Julie xx

Diane Fordham said...

So true about people and the stories they have to tell or perhaps even the stories they can inspire you to tell. I do like the idea about the hat Julie :-)

Julie P said...

People don't realise how interesting they are - especially to writers, Diane!

Julie xx