Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Making Something out of Nothing

“We writers spend our days making something out of nothing. There is the blank page (or screen) and then there is the fraught and magical process of putting words down on the page. There is no shape, no blueprint until one emerges from the page, as if through a mist.” ~ Still Writing by Dani Shapiro 
(thanks Michelle DeRusha for recommending)

This line spoke to me because of a conversation I wrote between two characters in my novella, The Disappearing Key. Viola’s estranged brother, Everett encourages his sister by telling her what their mother found to be the best part about her. He’s referring to her skills as a gardener.

“You could make something come up from nothing.” (Everett)

It stings, the simplicity of his words. Like a hairpin prick to my heart. Making something from nothing. (Viola’s reaction)
Months after my novella released, over a year after I wrote The Disappearing Key, I stumble upon Shapiro’s line, “We writers spend our days making something out of nothing.”


I love my job.

*Sue Harrison is featuring me on her blog today & next week we’re giving away a copy of my debut novella!

**We’re up to over fifteen book clubs for the Key Book Clubs from Coast to Coast contest. Please let me know if your book club is or will be reading my book so I can enter you for a chance to win gifts for every book club member in your group.

***photo of a Sweet William (the flowers Viola and Oriana planted together in my book)


  1. Hhmmm, making something out of nothing... that's creating. But what is nothing? We make something out of thoughts, right? Or ideas... Haha, yes, I love my job too!

    1. Love your philosophical approach to this question. ;-) Thanks to you I've been stirring this one around all week. Sometimes it does feel like thoughts or ideas come out of thin air, though, doesn't it?

  2. I've never really thought of my writing as something from nothing. Seems to me that the stories are floating around out there, and I'm just the interpreter.

    1. Cool way to see it, being an interpreter. I got Shapiro's point though. There is something wild about taking an assortment of random thoughts, experiences, etc. from life and turning it into a novel. And maybe the word nothing isn't it so much as disorder to order. Still thinking on this one.


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