Monday, April 23, 2012

Territory

Growing up takes guts. There are siblings to deal with, extended family, school, homework, friendships, household chores, and of course, Mom and Dad. All of that without even mentioning the physical aspects of growing pains.

Childhood is territorial by nature. Kids find norms and cling to them--games, friends, family, TV shows, stories, and characters. Even stuffed animals. As humans, we gather, join, plant roots, and stake our claim. Order and structure gives us purpose to grow and improve. It also pushes us to think, compromise, and prioritize.


The notion of territory might conjure a feeling of safety and assurance, which can couple itself with fear of change--keeping the norm as is. But as authors, whether writers of fantasy or contemporary ideas, we must find ways to create new portholes to view our world, relationships, and life through.

We MUST stake claim of our stories, while being territorial, giving the norm a new look.
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other A to Z participants.

What about you? Do YOU claim your manuscripts in different ways? Do YOU push the territorial envelope? 

If you do, tell us how. What's your secret?

27 comments:

  1. You are correct about territory. Owning your story is a must for a writer. But sometimes it takes awhile to get there when you are on your story #1. Being around other writers who are passionate help that.

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    1. Haha...you that about me better than most. ;D

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  2. I love that picture! So perfect for your post. Great post. I'm one who doesn't like change so have to push myself on the territory issue.

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  3. Oh, I'm working on this. :) I don't like a whole lot of change so I've had to learn to do so. Great post!

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  4. Great post, Sheri. I'll have to ponder it for a while. :)

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  5. I'm journeying into new territory right now!

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  6. My most recently completed manuscript is all about territory, though I hadn't thought about it until reading your post. Two friends competing for my protagonist's attention is pretty territorial, right?

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  7. I'm territorial over my writing time. ;) Oh, and I love that picture. Too cute!

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  8. Constantly. But the new territory has to feel believable, IMO.

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  9. I guess I kind of stake new territory ever time I try a new genre or point of view. It's always fun to familiarize yourself with a brand new landscape and make it your own.

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  10. I'm venturing into new territory with the third book in my trilogy. I hope I can claim it, own it. Interesting post today.

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  11. Oh, what an interesting way to think about it. I think publishers like 'new territory that can be described using old territory' best. It's it's too new, they are all skittish and won't go near it... That has been one of my challenges... choosing territory that's too hard to put in context. i am working on it, though.

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  12. I guess I always feel like I'm in unknown territory when I start out on a project. It's not until I'm into revisions that I feel I know the landscape and can navigate my way through it, seeing and appreciating what's there. Great post.

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  13. My sister who was closest to my age was my best friend, but we were also very territorial. There was an imaginary line that we had in the middle of the back car seat and woe to the one who crossed into the other's territory.

    When it comes to writing I haven't been entering any new territory so I accept sharing.


    Lee
    Please help me reach 100 followers at: A Few Words
    An A to Z Co-host blog
    My Main blog is Tossing It Out

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  14. I love the way you put it, new portholes to view our world, and "giving norm a new look"!

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  15. I tend to revert to known comforts in my writing. But I do mine the best gems when I push the territorial border and try new things.
    Excellent and thought-provoking post.

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  16. Starting something new freaks me out because it usually comes after months and months of something familiar, and I wonder, "Can I do it? I mean, can I really bring this story to life?"

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  17. That's really interesting. I never thought about that aspect of it. Yes, I suppose my novel is my private territory - like my own playground to some extent. I can invite others in, like critique partners, but ultimately it's mine. :D

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  18. It's interesting that people have all read your blog and the notion of territory a bit differently
    probably because it is unique in expression and character to each person
    I claim the Moon as my territory (ha)

    Moondustwriter's Blog

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    1. I, too, think everyone's interpretation is interesting. Just goes to show, we can claim what we will.

      Thanks so much for stopping by!!

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  19. Very true. You can't just write a story. You must OWN it! But like a young wolf, you have to gradually learn territoriality (is that a word?).

    J.C. Martin
    A to Z Blogger

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  20. Geez, every time I looked at the picture, I'd crack up. It's too cute.

    I'm assuming I stake claim to my stories. I think everything I do to them is about staking claim. :)

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  21. I never connected this word to my writing before, but you're right.

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  22. That's a good question. Never considered territory and writing before but you are right.

    Sonia Lal @ Story Treasury

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  23. I push the envelope all the time.

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