The Second Roast ft. Iseult Murphy

“There is no real ending. It’s just the place where you stop the story.”

Frank Herbert – source

No writer, no human being for that matter, can go at life alone. Somewhere along the way we all realize at some point that we need others to help us along, and vice versa. My own journey began nearly four years ago, and I’ve learned to take constructive criticism as objectively as I can. When you put words out for the world to see, you’ve got to expect scrutiny. If you don’t, you’re really looking at the world through rose colored glasses.

Welcome to a new collaborative blog series called Roast My Post. It’s a quest to not only get to know others in the writing community, but learn from their own experiences and share the wealth of their knowledge with you. For The Second Roast, I’ve invited author Iseult Murphy to pick apart my second ever blog post titled “Pros and Cons of Writing.” Grab a snack or beverage of choice – it’s gonna be a long one!

I became aware of Leigh when she interviewed me last year. Publicizing ME is the kind of activity I like to encourage in other people, so when I saw she was looking for guests to Roast her Posts (thought it was something to do with food originally. Have to say, I’m disappointed), I graciously agreed. People may call me many things, and generous is always one of them.

A screenshot of a cell phone

Description automatically generated

Let’s start at the very beginning. That’s a very good place to start, or so they say. However, Leigh obviously hasn’t heard this, or, if she has, she hasn’t taken this advice to heart. I commend her choice of blue, it is my favourite colour, so I approve, but I’m not sure about her blog subjects. I love books, so I get that, and she is posting about writing. Logging… okay, I suppose it links into books because of paper? Elieving I have never heard of, and I know every word in the English language, and some in other languages (there is a lot of crossover), so I think she has made this word up. What does ELIEVING mean, Leigh? If you are going to make up words, at least give us the meaning!

Anyway, on to the post. PROS AND CONS OF WRITING. I admire Leigh for broaching such a subject. I’ve heard of some writers who have done hard time, but I wasn’t aware of the eh, how do I put this delicately – escorts? – of the writing industry. Oh wait, wasn’t there that book by that one person…? Never mind, Leigh is going to enlighten me. * cracks knuckles * This is going to be one hell of a post!

A screenshot of a social media post

Description automatically generated

Now, Leigh, if you want to be taken seriously for your writing, you have to know how to punctuate things properly. I’ve put in the proper song quotes for you. No thanks necessary (although it’s appreciated). 

I think I’m getting a handle on your sense of humour. You certainly like making stuff up, anyway. The first line of the keyboard spells out WRITER. Haha, Leigh, good one.

I don’t think any writer thought they weren’t good enough either. I certainly never did. Good, strong, solid start, Leigh. Of course, you ruin it in the next sentence. You think Tolkien never wrote something that wasn’t published? His estate has been doing something wrong for the last fifty years in that case!

A screenshot of a cell phone

Description automatically generated

I’m not sure where you are going with this, but I’ll play along until you dish the dirt about all those writers and their run ins with the law. 

I’m not sure it is nice to say loving history is a con. Aren’t you a historical novel writer, Leigh? Way to shoot yourself in the foot. Although, I suppose it might be a bit of a snooze fest if you have to hang around with all those librarians and knowledgeable folks. You should start writing fantasy, you get to MAKE IT ALL UP! It is great. As for jet setting around the world and writing it off as research – haha! Good one, Leigh. I’m on to you. “Research” indeed.

A screenshot of a cell phone

Description automatically generated

Yes, I do love writing but, how did you know? I can spell boobs with a calculator too, but that isn’t such a neat trick anymore (thanks to you, iphones). 

A little word on Mr A Hitler, who you so glibly reference in your ‘resolution’ paragraph. He didn’t become one of the most hated men in history until AFTER he published Mein Kampf. That’s something to think about, would be writers.

A screenshot of a cell phone

Description automatically generated

What are these resources you speak of? I’m assuming they are the pumpkin cookies in the picture. How is this a pro, exactly, and how will it make my writing better? More importantly, where can I get some? If you are going to throw out advice like this, Leigh, please give more detail. I notice you don’t hold back about advocating arson in the next (next) paragraph, although what you have against bridges is unclear. I’ve always found them very helpful for crossing bodies of water (contrary to popular opinion, I am not a witch or a vampire).

A screenshot of a cell phone

Description automatically generated

I think you must have got tired when you wrote this, because it is all over the place. You offer writing advice and you can’t even spell vocabulary? Tut tut. I agree that Will Forte is a con, but it seems a bit harsh to call him out publicly. 

Now, we’re getting to the good stuff. Anyone can write – yay! I’m so glad, because I wouldn’t have a chance otherwise, now would I? I like your shout out to John Donne, although the reference is a bit random. 

Leigh, you shouldn’t put yourself down like that. Of course, one person can know everything. As I stated at the start of this post, I know every word in the English language (and a few in other languages), so you really shouldn’t be selling yourself so short. Aim high, my friend! 

You started this resolution paragraph so upbeat, I’m disappointed that you ended on a downer. Go back to school? No thank you! However, I am interested in these Writer’s Blocks you mention. Are they like Lego? Do they come in sets?

A screenshot of a social media post

Description automatically generated

Here we are at the end of the post, and not one mention of prostitutes (I see now you meant professionals! I didn’t see that twist coming. Good one, Leigh) and conmen until the second last line. I’ve been waiting the whole post for this, but I have to give it to you, it is good advice. I’ll break it down for the less bright readers who mightn’t have got your message.

Find what kind of prose makes you happy (meaning another writer’s work that is hugely successful) and run with it (publish it as your own and run all the way to the bank!).

Thanks for that, Leigh, you got to the gold in the end.

Iseult Murphy writes horror, fantasy and science fiction, as she feels that the most difficult aspects of life can be best explored through the lens of speculative fiction. She is a member of the Horror Writers Association, and her writing has won several awards, including the RDS Young Science Writers competition and BBC Wildlife Poetry competition.

She currently resides on the east coast of Ireland with five dogs, two cats, a parrot and a couple of humans. When she isn’t writing, she enjoys reading, art and spending time with her animals.

She posts book reviews and about writing on her website, you can find her on twitter @AuthorIseult and buy her books on Amazon.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s