A Welcome Perspective
It’s time to share another bit of acquired knowledge with any writers out there. I don’t claim to know all there is to know but when I happen upon something fundamental or in this case simple words of encouragement, I am more than willing to share.
I am putting the finishing touches on a presentable first draft. It is my first memoir and the subject matter revolves around the topic of sports. Let me be the first to say I am no expert when it comes to the subject of sports but then athletes who write autobiography’s are not expert writers and even journalists tend to use stencilling in their work over time, as they become too familiar with the subject matter. You can see that when confronted with stock standard journalism or the mumblings of a brilliant athlete who perhaps cannot convey their achievements, then the alternative voice or opinion of the sports fan becomes just as relevant. And that is where I place myself. I was tentative approaching the topic because I had never played the game. How could I possibly shed any new light on something that those others mentioned could not? But that is just it, your perspective matters on any subject.
Whilst I admit that research is paramount in order to give credibility to your message, you still have a unique view of that particular subject. You still have your perspective to share. It is not that you are fabricating filler to make the topic what you want it to be but merely relaying the part of that subject that appeals or an area that you relate. If you are in this halfway place deciding whether to broach a particular subject, I strongly suggest you do. You have the opportunity to make people think about something in a way they may not have before and that, in earnest is the essence of perspective. To perhaps give clarity to this idea, let me relay another subject dear to my heart – Music.
Ten years ago I could have classed myself a semi-professional musician. I was living in Auckland, New Zealand at the time. I had played dozens of gigs, written about fifty songs, was dedicating at least eight hours a week to band practise and more time on top of that to guitar practise and composition. Even then, I was no expert but that wouldn’t stop me from writing about the subject today and I haven’t touched a guitar in months. What needs to be remembered is that while music journalists and critics will contrast and compare a particular band out there to every other band out there, you, as a fan of that particular band, can give your own view. It can still resonate with the reader. When a musician talks about their life in a retrospective they can’t necessarily relay to the reader exactly what that moment was like because they are not the writer that perhaps you are. In those situations a biography by a groupie or fan or a roadie with a talent for writing would have just as much impact.
When I read ‘Scar Tissue’ by Anthony Kiedis of the Red Hot Chili Peppers, I actually felt like he was holding back. I truly enjoyed the book and it is a real tale of sex, drugs and rock and roll but you could sense that the wear and tear of that lifestyle had stripped away the glamour you associate with rock’n’roll superstardom. That is where an outside voice helps. Now I understand that almost every celebrity uses ghost writers to capture a little more of the spark but what I am trying to say is don’t discount your words. Show your offering on the subject and hopefully you will inspire others in the process.
Good Luck and Good Night, You’ve been a great audience!!! [//Throws drumsticks into crowd//]