I remember the moment I finished writing my first book as though it were moments ago. My fingers flowed over the keys effortlessly, almost like the story was writing itself. Everything I’ve sat down to write begins with an idea, a tantalizing thought, but I don’t type a word until I’ve formulated how it will end. This first novel progressed in that same way. Except when I got to the end of Then Again when the tears flowed unexpectedly.
I think I speak for all writers who’ve invested weeks, months or even years on a story when I say it is the closest a person can come to feeling the elation of a child being born without having to give it a social security number. When it’s done it lives, it breathes and, if you’ve done it justice, it is laced with your proverbial blood, sweat and tears.
Most writers dream of being published by Random House with all of their books being made into movies on the silver screen and I am no different. When I send out the prerequisite letter, synopsis and first few pages to an agency and they turn it down it stings each and every time. I believe in what I’ve done. I know it would sell. Why can’t they take the time to read it cover to cover before sending me on my way aloofly dejected? Such is the nature of the beast. I’ve come to accept it. I don’t like it, but I accept it and I would never let that feeling pull me away from doing what I love: creating stories that touch people on many different levels.
Do I cringe and wince before I open that email reply from a literary agent in anticipation of another denial? Absolutely.
Do I consider a ceasefire where I stop sending the manuscripts out? At times.
Would I stop writing and give up on the whole process of developing a story, spinning a yarn and creating a world where I live vicariously through my characters? Not until I take my last breath. I’ve been bitten by the bug and there is no turning back. That elation of finishing a story that pulls all the threads together is addictive and sweet.
I may never make it to Random House. I may never see my babies on the Big Screen. Regardless, I find purpose in what I’m doing. I find solace in having something tangible in my hands and heart when I am done. As long as the tales beg to be written and flow through me like Then Again did I’ll scribble my ideas and I’ll type whenever and wherever I can.
My advice to all aspiring writers? Never stop trying to write a better story or reach people with your words. If you play the odds something beautiful is going to happen.
See you all at the bookstore,