Finding your strength as a writer

I was quoting some of my reviews from Trouble Down The Road when I noticed a similarity between two of them. One reviewer said:

"The reason I enjoyed it so much is because even though the books are fiction, Bettye Griffin touches on a lot of real life issues. She develops each of the characters so thoroughly that the reader will most likely identify with one or more of the characters."

And then there was the reviewer who said:

"I enjoy reading Bettye Griffin's mainstream fiction books because she writes about real family life situations."

The similarity, of course, is the references to "real life." I've always been a realist. Even my romance novels are more about real people with real issues who nevertheless manage to fall in love rather than fantasy-fests that suspend reality. These might not be the most popular storylines, especially in these times when difficulties abound, but it's me.

I'm okay with that. Trying to write something I'm not really feeling would be as fake as green contact lenses...and it would look just as bad.

Clearly, writing about everyday drama is my strength, something I do quite well, and some people find the results both interesting and relatable. So I am now going to begin writing my next mainstream women's fiction, which is about a long-held family secret that comes to light after 50+ years and threatens the very fabric of what had previously been a rock-solid family from Zion, Illinois. I do have a title, but I won't reveal that until much closer to the publication date. I'm very excited about this project; it's my most ambitious to date.

How do you like your fiction? Real life, fantasy, or a balance of the two?


PatriciaW said...

I like both real-world and fantasy in my fiction, but probably not at the same time. :-)

I only ask that the story provide what the blurb promises so I set my expectations appropriately.