The first time someone talks to you because they’ve read your novel, it is very peculiar.
The novel I have just published – My Memories of a Future Life – is about a classical pianist who has to stop playing because of a mysterious injury. Her desperation and her search for a cure are the journey of the book.
While I was writing it, it felt like my own life. Although I did not really live what my main character did in flesh, blood, bruises and miles, I lived it in heartbeats. Her journey probably taught me as much as it teaches her. Now it is out and she is telling her story to complete strangers. Who are contacting me.
Each time I feel privileged and humbled. Sometimes I recognise their names – they’re folks I exchange quips with on Twitter. Sometimes they are completely new to me. But it’s as if we are friends of long standing. They confess to hopes and dreams they put away thirty years ago. They tell me about wrong turnings and regrets. As though we’re staying up all night and it’s truth hour. They are telling me the book seems to be about them.
This is why novels are such a powerful medium. The personal connection is far greater than with TV or movies. Radio is certainly intimate; one voice talking, and you the listener supply the pictures. But novels reach deeper. Although all authors have a voice, when you read it is a hybrid of them and you. It is the voice of your own thoughts, the closest companion you could ever have. It tells the profoundest truth.
And as for me, the writer? I feel like I’ve been in an overwhelming dream, and have suddenly found I wasn’t there alone.
Roz Morris is a ghostwriter, editor and the author of Nail Your Novel – Why Writers Abandon Books and How You Can Draft, Fix and Finish With Confidence, available from Amazon. She has a website and a blog. You can follow her on Twitter at@dirtywhitecandy and @ByRozMorris.
Order the ebook or paperback copy of her latest book:
My Memories of a Future Life is out now in full, on Kindle.
My Memories of a Future Life in on Kindle at UK Amazon.
My Memories of a Future Life in Paperback on US Amazon.
You can listen to an audio of the first four chapters for free here.