Writing a story like an 8-year-old

Joe’s Post #125

writers blockOk, so as I struggle to get writing back in my life, as I overcome all the barriers I have largely put in my own way, the youngest brings home a story he’d written. He’s 8.

Like me, he’d spelled a few things incorrectly and, like me, his grammar was kinda hit and miss in a few areas.

But he’d written a whole story, found an amazing picture for the header (even looked up how to do a header) and somehow managed to type it all out. Now, you have to understand that at his age (for some reason), they are not taught typing. So to get a page done, he would have had to use two fingers, learn about fonts and paragraphing, then figure out how to get the words out of his head and on to the page.

And he did.

It was a great story, too, combining his two most favourite things in the world. 5 Nights at Freddy’s and Mario.

Lemme back up a bit, give you some context.

5 Nights at Freddy’s (1) is an apps game, a massively successful one, where you are a security guard, at night, trying to fend off unbelievably spooky animatronic animals that have malfunctioned. Oh momma, is this game scary. You have only limited power to keep the lights on and have to track all the animatronics on the security cameras. One mistake and they jump in your face and kill you.

It’s an amazing game with a detailed and complex backstory so deep that someone could make a movie about it. Or write a story.

So, that’s what he decided to do. He didn’t know about plot arcs or character development or theme or stakes or anything. He just sat down and wrote it. With Mario as the security guard. You know, Mario? From Super Mario fame?IMG_6559

Hey, that’s what they do in Hollywood. Mix and mash.

I loved the story in the way only a struggling writer could love a story. It was writing in its purest form. Writing for fun. Writing to entertain. Writing because something inspired you and you needed to tell THAT story.

Oh holy hell, how could I have forgotten that pure pleasure? How could I have gotten so lost in all the techniques and advice.

It’s easy, really.

Lack of success will force you to try to figure out what you’re doing wrong. How you could do better.

But maybe, just maybe, it’s not about the technical aspects of the story as much as getting it on the page because you want to get it on the page, written not for an editor or a market, but for yourself, your friends and your family.

It’s why I love blogging. It’s a purity of writing. It’s fun.

Now, how do I write my novel with that same sense of fun, like I was 8, again?

I’ll have some more thoughts next week.


Best show last week – The Fallen, with Gillian AndersonBest serial killer in a while. Nothing flashy, but dead creepy.

Book that I’m reading at the moment – Alan Furst’s, Mission to Paris. About a movie star to goes to France in 1938 to counter the German intelligence machine set up there.

Pages written on new book  30 (oh so painfully slow, but still going.)

Social Media update – What in the world is kik? I had to look it up. And Tinder and snapchat? and… and, oh forget it, i’ll just keep doing what I do here..

Health Ok, never try to play soccer with an 8 year old if you haven’t run in, like, 10 years. It’ll cripple you for days.

Best thing last week  Yet another amazing dinner for Ukrainian Christmas. So much for losing weight.

Worst thing  Pain. Or maybe old age. But you can forget how many muscles you have until you pretty much hurt them all.

3 thoughts on “Writing a story like an 8-year-old

  1. Very inspiring. Being around my publisher as well as friends that frantically watch their Amazon ratings several times a day makes it easy to forget how much I really love writing. New resolution: I will keep “Mario” more in mind.

  2. Pingback: Are writers born or made? | 5 Writers 5 Novels 5 Months

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s