There are a lot of ups and downs to being a writer. One minute, we're convinced we've written the next Harry Potter, and the next we want to bury the monstrosity we've created in the backyard. We have the thrill of completing a novel, and the struggle of revisions, and the excitement of submission, and the agony of rejection. We have the mind-blowing screaming moment of joy when we finish a book or get an offer of representation or a book deal or release our own book on Amazon, and then we have the crippling panic of writing the next book and being terrified we will never again be able to write something worth reading.
And sometimes we forget. We forget how far we've come. We forget how amazing we are.
My brother-in-law told me something over the holidays that I'll never forget. I'd announced my book deal to family, though I couldn't announce online yet because the contract wasn't final. Amidst all the congratulations and joy, my BIL said (and I paraphrase), "You know, this is so amazing. Nobody stood over you and told you to write every day, or made you keep going through all the rejections. This was all you, working hard and determined to reach your dream. And you did it."
Did you read that, people? Did you see yourself in it? I hope you did.
After he said that, I stood in the kitchen for a moment, dumbfounded and full of pride. Because he's right, and I'd forgotten it.
Did you know that as a teenager, I decided I would never write a novel? My plan was to stick to short stories, because a novel was hard. It was huge. It was impossible. And now, fifteen years later, I had forgotten that there was a time when I deemed something impossible and I had accomplished it. Several times, in fact. Because I worked hard and pushed through hard times and found joy in the good ones.
|Four writers, all in different stages of our dreams, all amazing.|
Congrats to Sara B. Larson on her book DEFY.
We forget that. We focus on what we haven't yet accomplished-- we don't have an agent, or a book deal, or a number one slot on Amazon. We forget that there was a time when we didn't write. When it was too hard or we were too busy or we just hadn't ever thought about doing something so mind-boggling as attempting to communicate our souls through 300 pages of words.
Try not to forget that. Wherever you are in your pursuit of your dream, you did it yourself with no overlord but your own determination. And that makes you one of the rarest and most amazing people in the world.
So, my friends, what are your dreams? How far have you come? And if you don't mind, can you hop on over to congratulate a writer just like you whose book, THE GATHERING, comes out today? I'm so thrilled for Randy Lindsay!