Categories
Authors/New Voices Notes of Inspiration Writing/Reading

Writer’s Blog: Lauren Bell – The Beauty of Writing and Having Faith

In her last post, Lauren Bell author of ‘In a Land of Canaries’ published in Breve New Stories Issue Zero, talks about her passion for writing and reading.

Quite simply, I love writing. I also love reading which helps if you’re serious about writing.
For me, writing is a way to shape worlds and realities which are very different from our own, to create characters you would either love to be or have as friends, but above all to stretch one’s imagination and to entertain the impossible because the beauty of writing (in terms of fiction anyway) is that anything can happen.
I also spend a lot of time daydreaming, which isn’t very good if you’re in the middle of a work meeting, but an absolute godsend if you’re an aspiring writer and looking for snippets of inspiration to propel you put pen to paper. Anything can suffice for the opening to a story – a place, overheard (or imagined dialogue), or even a single image. But what’s most important is to write. If you want your stories to be read, you have to write them down.

BREVE-LOGO
Finally, if you are serious about writing then getting your work out there is paramount. I am fortunate enough to write for STORGY – a collaborative literary ezine, where each month I am sent an image I have to write an accompanying story for. Using pictures as writing aides is a really useful technique; you study the picture, you work out what it’s showing you on a literal level, and, most importantly, what it’s not showing you. The not showing part is great because that’s where your imagination comes in and you get free-reign to write about whatever you want (so long as it links to the story in some way, no matter how small).
Simply put: writing is all about you, your ideas, the stories you want to share with the world; and you are the only one who can tell them.

 

Lauren Bell

You can read Lauren Bell’s stories here: http://storgy.com/lauren-bell/

Categories
Authors/New Voices Notes of Inspiration Writing/Reading

Writer’s Blog: Lauren Bell – Notes of Inspiration

Lauren Bell author of ‘In a Land of Canaries’ published in Breve New Stories Issue Zero, talks about the authors that inspire her.
1) Neil Gaiman – a man who can write well about practically anything and everything, and who creates such a fantastical array of memorable characters and alternative worlds in every work. Gaiman’s fantasy/mythical vision grounds itself in good old-fashioned storytelling; whether it be an adult-type fairy tale, a fable or a myth or something entirely else. His prose is lucid yet effervescent and really paints his vision of the world in the reader’s mind. I would definitely recommend American Gods, Neverwhere and Stardust – three amazing reads by a truly fabulous writer. BREVE-LOGO
2) Stephen King/Joe Hill – Now I know I’m cheating here but honestly King and Hill are quite possibly the most illustrious writers in their field. Their creativity, flair for authentic dialogue and psychotic characters has furnished classic horror and thriller reads with a literary panache most authors writing in this genre struggle with. They write with a fierce intelligence and a real zest for stories and storytelling, creating a plethora of twists and turns along the way; and gore aside, the psychological impact after reading their work is nothing short of indelible. I would definitely recommend Doctor Sleep and IT by King, and NOS4R2 by Hill.
3) Tania Hershman – a writer whose flash fiction collections literally showed me what a story could be. I first heard her work broadcast on BBC Radio 4. Upon hearing them, I was amazed at how succinct and poetic her work was. I knew she had a unique way with language; the ability to move a reader with such insight and using so few words is an achievement she manages to realise again and again and again. The White Road and Other Stories, and My Mother Was an Upright Piano are must reads for anyone who appreciates the finest storytelling.

Lauren Bell

Categories
Authors/New Voices Notes of Inspiration Writing/Reading

Writer’s Blog: Lauren Bell – The Idea Behind “In a Land of Canaries”

Lauren Bell talks about what inspired her story ‘In a Land of Canaries’ published in Breve New Stories Issue Zero.

For me, finding inspiration and ideas for short stories is practically everywhere I look. In the case of In a Land of Canaries, my inspiration stemmed from a recent trip to London with my dad and brother. BREVE-LOGOOne of the places we visited was Canary Wharf – a realm completely unfamiliar but which also made a profound impact on me. I think what struck me most was the sheer amount of glass buildings surrounding us on all sides and how the sky was reflected back wherever we looked.

As a starting point, (which is the case with most of my short stories), I usually only need either an initial sentence or a phrase or a single image which embodies the story I want to relay. For ‘Canaries’ I can distinctly remember being on a train, leaving Birmingham City Centre behind for the day, and reflecting on our recent trip. I soon had Canary Wharf in my mind and wondered about the origin of the name. Why Canary? I wanted to try and justify the name and knew that I would write a story about Canary Wharf involving canaries.
Another aspect which I wanted to capture was the sheer awe I felt when I first saw these huge glass buildings first-hand; the layout, the structure and the reflections seemed to dwarf me, and I knew then that I would write a story about Canary Wharf with a fantastical element to it.
I enjoy writing stories that loosely fit the ‘magical realism’ spectrum and so I started to explore the possibility of Canary Wharf’s workforce as canaries in disguise, and since I was new to the area, I created a narrator who was there as a reporter – someone on the outside looking in and trying to make sense of what they were seeing.

Lauren Bell