Friday Speak Out: "Some Thoughts on Writing," Guest Post by Jayne Martin

Friday, November 27, 2009
Some Thoughts on Writing

by Jayne Martin

At 60 years old, I finally know what I want to be when I grow up. A writer.

This is actually the second time in my life I have realized this. The first was when I was in my 20’s struggling to be an actress despite my extreme discomfort in actually standing up in front of anyone and performing. This was about the same time that Sylvester Stallone was achieving his “overnight” success as writer and star of the first “Rocky.” I naively figured if he could write, how hard could it be and I started writing scenes for my acting class. To my great surprise, they were very well-received and I suddenly went from being the worst actress in the class to someone regarded with a certain amount of respect, it felt good.

While earning my living typing the screenplays of others, I became exposed to literally hundreds of scripts – some exceptionally good, like those by Alvin Sargent and Fay Kanin, and some exceptionally bad by writers never to be heard from again. I learned from all of them. My forté became the realm of the TV-Movie. I would either pitch an original idea or I would get an assignment to write a script from someone else’s idea, or from a true-life story, or adapt a book. The great thing about working on assignment or from a pitch is I got paid whether the movie got made or not and if it did get made, I actually get a bonus payment. My career as a TV writer spanned almost two decades and I was fortunate to have several of my scripts made into movies.

I wrote my last movie in 2004 and for the longest time I felt no creative drive to write anything. Until recently. It started with the discovery of a few new authors and the re-discovery of some old favorites, and their voices inspired me. So with the encouragement of some friends, I started a blog, injaynesworld, and darned if people didn’t start showing up, although where they got the idea there’d be refreshments served I have no idea. Oh, yeah, I might have said something about that in my shameless effort to lure readers. Most importantly, my creative juices are flowing again and I’m meeting and making friends with some wonderful writers.

Since I am no longer completely dependent on writing for a living, I am once again free to write for the pure pleasure and love of it, and I had forgotten how much I truly do love it. Not that I would turn money down. I’d love to get a paycheck for writing again and maybe I will. In the meantime, it’s such a joy to write directly for an audience and get that immediate feedback. A writer needs an audience. Because if a tree falls in the forest and there’s no one around, it really doesn’t make a sound.

Jayne Martin is an unapologetic, bleeding-heart liberal who loves good horses, good friends, and good wine. A TV-writer in a former life, her credits include "Big Spender," for Animal Planet, and "A Child Too Many," "Cradle of Conspiracy," and "Deceived By Trust" for Lifetime. Visit her blog, injaynesworld.


Do you want to reach WOW’s audience? We welcome short posts (500 words or less) from writers just like you! You can include your bio, pic, and links to your website/blog for promotion. Our only requirement is that your post be about women and writing. Send your Friday “Speak Out!” post to: marcia[at]wow-womenonwriting[dot]com for consideration.



Ann Imig said...

Hi Jayne! Everyone go visit Jaynes' blog--she mixes wit with beautiful writing.

Also, I used to act and find writing/blogging very performative--especially with blogging.

Thanks, Jayne! Thanks WOW. said...

I'm so glad Jayne decided to write for fun! As a blogger, she's a great role model as well as being clever and witty!

Linda Medrano said...

A day without a visit to Jayne is much like a day without oxygen. I require it! Fun, informative, and super smart!

Juli said...

I'm a new fan of Jayne's blog (and twitter). Jayne is the real deal. Thanks for this inspiring post.

Adam said...

Hey Jayne, great post (no surprises here)! Hey everyone reading,just drop by Jayne's blog, and you'll be entertained, and you'll feel welcome!

Adam (

gayle said...

Love reading everything that Jayne writes!!

People Who Know Me Would Say: said...

Jayne, your die-hard fans will follow you just about anywhere. Had to put the 'just about' in there because there's just no telling where you'll go!

I enjoyed this very much and I'd submit something myself, if I was a writer!

Stephanie said...

Jaynne, I'm always entertained by your posts!

Unknown said...

Great post Jayne-totally agreed with the need for an audience. I also enjoyed your own blog-warm and humorous.


Aunt Becky said...

And you are a beautiful writer. So glad to have met you.

Unknown said...

From the first moment I read your blog I couldn't get enough. So glad you made your way back to writing. A treat for all.

Beth said...

I love how this bloggy world gets me out of my small Georgia town. Jayne is a great writer and I always enjoy her views.

How I relate to trying to figure out my place in life. We really are never too old to figure out what we want to do when we "grow up."

Jayne Martin said...

Well, damn! If I knew you were all going to show up, I would have at least put on some makeup... Thanks so much for your readership, encouragement and kind comments. I've always felt that a writer's job is to entertain, educate and/or enlighten. If I manage to score on any one of those, then I will have earned the gift of your time. Thank you again for visiting me at injaynesworld. - Jayne

Lucy said...

SOOO glad you decided to write again. Your blog is one of my favorites!

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