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Wilfried F Voss

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The Emotional Toll of Writing a Novel - Thoughts by Wilfried F. Voss
by Wilfried F Voss   
Rated "PG" by the Author.
Last edited: Saturday, August 25, 2012
Posted: Saturday, August 25, 2012

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What happens when you combine knowledge and passion and write a fantasy novel? Writing a novel takes time, and you are constantly involved with the passion aspect.

 Ah, he comes excited. Sir, my need is sore.
Spirits that I’ve cited my commands ignore.
- The Sorcerer’s Apprentice (Der Zauberlehrling) by Johann Wolfgang von Goethe


The saying is, when you write a post for your blog or even a fictional piece, you should write about something that reflects your expertise, something that you are very familiar with, something you know very well. In all consequence, knowledge can be replaced by passion when it comes to the topic of fantasy. But what happens when you combine knowledge and passion and write a fantasy novel? My point is, writing a novel takes time, meaning you are constantly involved with the passion aspect. I have been (and still am) involved with this scenario, and it feels like the spirits I have cited ignore my commands.

It all began quite some time ago by writing a post about Puff the Magic Dragon, and here, too, I am citing the Sorcerer's Apprentice. Let me quote: "Peter Yarrow was definitely toying with sorcery when he took the poem and made it into a song. Since that day he battled to tame the spirits."

One of Peter Yarrow's remarks (yes, the Peter in Peter, Paul, and Mary) caught my attention. He said, that 'Puff' is about the hardships of growing older. The song never had any meaning other than the obvious one and is about the loss of innocence.

These days, I am watching my son grow up, and I compare my childhood, which was so very different and not as well protected, to his. Watching my son not only evoked old childhood memories and emotions; I also compare myself constantly to my own father, and, oh God, what a difference!

However, this is not about bragging about my parenting success; I am also looking at the dark side, which is represented by my corporate life, a.k.a. the business world. Just recently, I had been through a period of constant pressure. As we all know, the economy is not doing too well, and in my case I felt the stress and so did my son. I concentrated on getting the business going, and, as a result, I became more and more reclusive. There were even times when I released my stress on my son, but, amazingly, he took it very well and did not fail to mention every time that he loved me.

As they say, the first step to betterment is to admit the problem, and, I believe, I am on the path to improvement. The result will be my newest novel titled "Painted Wings And Giants' Rings," a line taken from the song Puff the Magic Dragon. I incorporated all my feelings and experiences as a father of a five-year-old and as a businessman into this new novel.

I paid the emotional toll by being reminded of my earliest childhood memories, which, as I realized just about recently, were not happy memories at all. It is amazing, but by writing the novel I uncovered some of my deepest emotions, and that became abundantly clear in one key scene of the story line, where I, unintentionally, associated an unhappy childhood as well as a stressful business life with imprisonment.

Nevertheless, while Painted Wings And Giants' Rings is about the loss of childhood, it is by far not a depressive story. Most scenes in this novel is about childhood adventures. Let me try to produce a temporary, first synopsis:

Roger Wilkinson is in a coma after a car accident on the Massachusetts Turnpike. The doctor describes his condition as being in a dark place. Roger's children, Patrick and Siobhan, decide to rescue their father from the dark place and bring him to Never-Neverland, because, in their view, nobody dies in Never-Neverland. They try to find their father through their dreams, and in these dreams they travel to the island of Sodor and the land of Honalee, but without success. Soon, they realize their father can't be in a children's place, and they need to enter dark, adult places like the Island of Shalott and the Isle of Frozen Souls. They meet the Lady of Shalott, who ultimately dies after seeing Sir Lancelot, and Annachie Gordon, whose heart turned to stone after learning that his love, Jeannie, had died. Patrick and Siobhan survive these dark places by remaining what they are: Children. When they ultimately find their father, they must apply the full power of childhood against the dark forces of adulthood.

Painted wings, childhood’s great defender,
And giants’ rings are such great splendor.
Keep these treasures, don’t grow old
In a world of tears and full of cold.
- The Faery’s Silly Song

Painted Wings and Giants' Rings is due for release in November 2012. For more updates see my website or feel free to "like me" through the Facebook icon on top of this page.



Web Site: Wilfried F. Voss

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