Thursday, June 30, 2011

For/From Indie Authors: Ted Krever

Ted Krever watched the Beatles on Ed Sullivan, went to Woodstock (the good one), and graduated Sarah Lawrence College with a useless degree in creative writing.

He spent the next few decades in media journalism, at ABC News on the magazine show Day One with Forrest Sawyer and the Barbara Walters Interviews of a Lifetime series, as General Manager of BNNtv, a documentary production company, creating programs for CNN, A&E, Court TV, CBS, MTV News, Discovery People and CBS/48 Hours, and as VP/Production of a short-lived dotcom, followed swiftly by nine months of unemployment.

Ted now writes novels and sells mattresses in Staten Island NY,  a job which registers at a loathsome -98 on the Cosmopolitan Eligible Male Job-Status Guide. Ted is happily divorced, purports to be a good kisser and hopes for world peace. He was once accused of attempting to blow up Ethel Kennedy with a Super-8 projector.

Advice:
  • Write about what hurts. A novel is a long-term commitment; you’ve got to stare at the thing for months and years and just when you near the end, you’ve got to find a way to make it feel fresh. The only thing that keeps my attention that long is something I can’t get away from, even if I want to. I've got a couple of romantic comedies, a couple of dark novels and a thriller--but they're all about aches I can't ignore.
  • Trust yourself. The worst tendency of new insecure writers (and experienced insecure writers—we all have bouts) is to feel there is a ‘right’ way to tell a story. Rules are made to be broken. The right way is the way that works. Which leads to:
  • Start with character. This is the only controversial piece of advice I have but I believe in it whole-heartedly. I think if you’ve found a strong character you believe in (which is not necessarily the same as ‘agree with’ or ‘admire’), the story will appear organically, as an outgrowth of character. And then it’ll go places an outlined plot will never go.

Link:
My website: www.tedkrever.com

2 comments:

  1. Hurt, trust, and character. Good rules. I esp. like the "write what hurts". I never thought of it that way, but you're so right. That's when we tap into our emotions and hopefully our readers' emotions as well.

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  2. Ted, love the blog. My husband says I write better when I'm unhappy or under stress. He tries desperately to keep me that way (of course I'm kidding. But there is truth in what you say. I always tells my students no one wants to read about someone who is content. Good job.

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