It is amazing how even a tiny spark is enough to trigger the "I have to write" spot in someone's mind.
It is amazing how even a tiny spark is enough to trigger the "I have to write" spot in someone's mind. Was the seed of the writing talent already there and just needed to be nudged to come alive? Well, I didn’t know I could or should write until the tiny triggers came together and started to grow the “wanting to write” seed in my mind.
I’ve always been a book nerd, thanks to my dad who introduced me to the inviting world of literary wonders. Something has to be exceptionally good on TV to make me give up my nightly ritual of reading in bed.
Of course, I read during the daytime too when I have a chance, but one rainy day, I ran out of new books. As I was rummaging through the bookshelves, I kept mumbling under my breath that I should have picked up a few more books on my last trip to the bookstore. After a while my daughter got frustrated of hearing her mommy whine, so she came up with the brilliant idea, “Mom if you can’t find anything to read, why don’t you write something?” This was the moment when the seeds of writing a story in my favorite genre, fantasy, was planted deep into my wandering mind.
After doing a thorough research on the art of writing fiction books, I started to write Ilona’s story for my own enjoyment, but soon I realized that the “how to write fiction” guides were too complicated and restrictive for my wild imagination, so I broke the fictional rules and created my own. I knew that writing in the first person in diary style is frowned upon in writing circles, but I wrote most of the chapters in this style because it fits the story. The main character, Ilona, has to do a lot of soul-searching as she’s coming of age and accepts her destiny.
I played with the story for months. I kept going back and rewrote or rearranged chapters, added characters and deepened the relationship between the main characters. I let my imagination soar and often caught myself daydreaming about the story. I only wrote when I felt inspired; I didn’t want to start looking at writing as a job that I must complete. I played with ideas and imagined characters and scenes for days, and sometimes for weeks. And then, a sight, sound or even smell triggered a process in my mind that probably best described as if a handful of small puzzle pieces are thrown into a box, shaken well, and suddenly, most of the pieces fall into place forming a clear picture. This was the stage when after not writing a word for weeks, I wrote 5-6 chapters in one day.
After the first book of the series was published, I attended a literary event about two years ago. I found the information about writing and publishing helpful, but it turned into a negative experience for me because at that time I only had one book published, and I didn’t know too much about publishing and book promotion. The seasoned authors at the event made me feel incompetent and insignificant with their remarks such as, “Oh, you write fantasy? It’s not a popular genre, try erotica if you want to be successful.” Or, another writer said with a smirk on his face, “So, you’re adding historical elements to a fantasy story. Hmm… who would read that?” And, “I see you’re not writing by the accepted formulas, you’re never going to be successful if you don’t change your writing style.” That did it; I never attended another event after that.
I wrote a story that I like to read and fantasy readers like it too:
“Erika has brought a new kind of fantasy story into the realm of fantasy fiction. The narrative is magnetic and entertaining.” ~SeriousReading
“This is so different from the usual fare churned out by ordinary writers.” ~Valerie Byron
“Mystery, suspense, romance and well-developed characters that hold reading interests from its beginning to end.” ~J Faye
“Original, mystical and unique; in fact, it's so original I have nothing to compare it with.” ~Miss Devora
“I could feel and visualize what was happening as if I was right there.” ~Lauren Sloan
Author Erika M Szabo
The Ancestors' Secrets Series:
Book one, Protected by the Falcon:
Book two, Chosen by the Sword: