Monday, May 26, 2014

Drive Time: Write What you Love

Lamborghini Countach
(This is my 300th post on this blog)

Today is, in the US, Memorial Day.  Yesterday the Indianapolis 500 race was ran (as was the Coca-Cola 600 but that's NASCAR so who cares?).  As is my tradition, going back to 1969, I watched the Indy 500.  And in 1969, I decided Mario Andretti was my hero/favorite driver (and I didn't like the Unser brothers).  Now Mario's grandson, Marco, came in third yesterday and his son, Micheal, is a team owner who owned the winning car.

I'm not a big fan of watching racing on television.  I find it boring.  That is especially true NASCAR which I call "rednecks turning left" and is like your interstate line up going 150 mph.  Yes, the crashes are spectacular but I worry more that someone might get hurt.  I tried hard to like watching Formula 1 (when they show it on US television) but while the precision driving is interesting, there seems to be missing the wheel-to-wheel competition to keep it interesting.  It's sort of like baseball: moments of action separated by hours of tedium.

I've always like cars.  I can't remember a time I didn't like cars.  I didn't want to work on them and I didn't want to modify them, I just wanted to drive them . . . fast.  And I still do, occasionally hitting felonious velocities on back country roads or watching the speedometer brush against 155 at the end of the straightaway on the race track.  I once described driving on the racetrack the most fun I've had with my clothes on.  Talking about driving on the track I wrote a blog post called "Zen and the Art of Driving Fast."  Since driving on a racetrack I have tremendous respect for professional race car drivers, even NASCAR.

In my writing I've not spent a lot of time dwelling on my love of cars.  In my Adept Series novels, the heroes generally disdain cars, don't drive, and have someone drive them if they need them.  They use taxis a lot.

That changed a bit in Gods of Strife, my latest Adept Series novel that is set in 1976.  I indulged myself a bit by including a Lamborghini Countach and a Ferrari GT4 BB (both 1970s "supercars") in the plot.  There's even a car chase of sorts with the good guys in the Lamborghini and the bad guy on a flying carpet (well, it is an urban fantasy).

What is it you love?  Do you include that love in your writing?  You should.  You want your writing to be passionate and if you write about your passions, it will be.  I was frustrated writing some of the Adept Series books because I had to shuttle my love of cars (and other things such as airplanes) to other characters.

They say "write what you know."  But I would add "write what you love."

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