How I became a bad fiction writer

maloki
3 min readNov 9, 2021

While I’ve always been a writer, only recently have I dared labeled myself as such, after spending years of fear, and slowly starting to dismantle those layers, I decided that it was okay to call myself a writer. Because all you need to do to be a writer is to write, and I wanted to write. So, I began putting into practice to write, or ponder about writing, and here I stand before you today, a writer.

a woman presenting person, sitting by a desk with a pen in their hand
writing person

Isn’t that a bit self-deprecating, a bit negative to call yourself a bad (fiction) writer? Well, yes, probably. The problem for me is generally, I don’t feel like I can make up stories, I can not draw from nothing, which I hope to be able to elaborate on here. Any time I want to write fiction, I always pull something out from within me, it’s never entirely fictional. It’s always a piece of me that wants to come out, and it’s something that’s either been bothering me or that I’d like to play around with.

Now you might say, but all fiction writers draw from themselves, from experiences, from other’s writing, they may not know it but they are. That’s why characters may seem to be people in real life, and therefore need a disclaimer at the beginning of the book, but they take on a life of their own as you write, and become someone else. And you’re right. That’s how it is, and I think that’s how it is for me too, but that’s even more why I feel like I’m a bad fiction writer, and like maybe fiction isn’t for me.

It could be that my inspiration for writing right now is a lot of essayists, a lot of autobiographical writing, where people are writing stories about their lives, that allow you to feel less alone, and more seen, and so on. Like, Maya Angelou she wrote 7 autobiographies, and that amazes me. I’ve yet only read the first one, and it was gruesome and painful in so many ways, but also beautiful story telling.

So while I consider myself a bad fiction writer, it allows me space to become a better one, or a better writer in other ways, because every time I write, I can give myself room to practice my writing. To hone my craft (which is apparently my favorite expression right now). By allowing myself to be bad, I can test out new things every time I write a small piece of fiction.

It allows me space to focus on writing non-fiction. It may be creative non-fiction, or it may just be essays. It may be the occasional flash-fiction. Or it may even be poetry. I’ve always been a jack-of-all-trades, and I will probably continue to be for my entire life. I just need to find a way to weave it all together into something to share with you all.

And who knows, maybe this will be part of a piece of work some day, not just an article on a website. And maybe one day, I’ll be able to answer the title of this post, because I never actually told you HOW I became a bad fiction writer. Until then.

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maloki

I write passionately about things like ADHD, Mental Health, Mastodon, and Games. You can support me by donating to my GoFundMe https://gofund.me/39b69b10