(This column is posted at www.StevenSavage.com, Steve’s Tumblr, and Pillowfort. Find out more at my newsletter, and all my social media at my linktr.ee)
While reviewing my plans for 2023, a few possible writing ideas tempted me. However, that temptation turned into classification as I told myself certain ideas worked as blog posts. Fortunately, I stopped myself and asked a question.
I asked “why am I assuming these are blog posts?”
Suddenly I felt a shift in perception. Why do some of us – as I am sure I am not alone – assume the proper form of an idea so easily? We feel this is a blog post, this is a book, this is some nebulous project we discard, and so on. At least for me – and I am sure others – it seems we build a mental filing system for how to realize our writing and then rarely touch it.
This “current of forms” that draws us along is similar to ideas of adaptions. A book becoming a movie or show is treated as some kind of triumph. I mean it’s often a financial one if you get a good deal, but is it really? I’ve encountered media in different forms and been surprised what worked well, as opposed to good, if profitable.
This is doubtlessly due to my revived interest in ‘Zines and ‘Zine history. Seeing so many people self-publish booklets, magazines, and oddities opened my mind to the many ways to give expression form. I wonder if there are so many ways to publish now that we just automatically slot our ideas into one of the many existing ways and then stop thinking about it.
But it’s worth thinking about! Is something best as an ebook, or a physical book, or a podcast? Why is it authors must have a blog when their books may speak for themselves? Is a podcast more someone’s style even if they like doing a newsletter? I think it’s worth rethinking what forms we give our works as we may be missing better – and more enjoyable – ways of doing it.
My mind’s been opening up since then. Why not do some works as PDF e-zines (say, on Itch.io) than blog posts? Shouldn’t I make print versions of my small Way With Worlds books as they’re so popular and can be donated when one is done? Maybe I should do that podcast . . .
Do I know where this is going? Nope. But I feel like my creativity is going into an interesting direction, freed from the old currents of my mind, and I’m curious to see what’s next.