The Right to Write

I came to the decision to be a writer very gradually and in a rather roundabout sort of way. When I was a little girl I found out my mother always wanted to be a writer, and I think that’s what made me decide to make it one of hobbies. In elementary school I always enjoyed when they’d let us write little stories about buttons or toys and such. By the time I was in fifth grade I was writing my own. I finished writing my first novel in the summer of sixth grade. It was absolute drek, I’m sure. I wouldn’t really know as I haven’t read it in years. It seems a rather safe assumption to make, though, that it would be unreadable.

Well, once the first novel was done, though, it served as the gateway drug. I was hooked, and that writing became one of my most persistant habits, especially during the summer breaks from school. Oddly enough, though, it never occurred to me to try to make writing my career. Even if I was churning out at least one “novel” a year. Oh no. I was mad about dinosaurs at the time and I wanted to be a paleontologist of all things. In middle school I discovered Acting. Boy did that bug bite hard. I’m still shaking off the symptoms of that particular brain fever. That particular aspiration carried me through high school and well into college and my regular day jobs.

Now, when and why did I decide to try my hand at actually being an author (as opposed to a hobby writer)? Um…I don’t know. I think it was sometime while I was working on my last manuscript. I was sitting and reading medieval poetry with a historical movie on in the background. Suddenly something just literally went *click* in my brain. I got out a little blue notebook and just started writing the idea that had popped into my head. The first fresh novel idea I’d had since I was fresh out of high school. I kept writing even in the midst of personal trauma and professional frustration and a few months later I had a 75000 word novel.

As I was writing that book the land of the novel and its people really did become a respite for me, a sanctuary from all the stuff that was going down in the real world. The old dream (acting) had been dead for a good long bit by then and I hadn’t yet decided what I was going to do with myself, what course I should pursue for my life and my higher education. Then, of a sudden, I had this bright, shiny new novel in front of me. Now I had an inkling.

Now, I’ve been doing my research, reading blogs, querying. Oh and revising! Oy, with the revising! Manuscript (unsurprisingly) did not set the publishing world on fire when it went out. I’m still sending it out, though, hoping maybe someone will see something special in my sweet, simply romantic little book.

Meanwhile, I am writing the next story, and I really can’t wait to finish it. It’s big, though. The scope of the thing, I mean. Massive. Big and complicated with all these loose threads I am going to have to go back and pull together or trim in the next edit. I have high hopes for it, though. But then, don’t all aspiring authors have that? And rightly so. Writing may not be all about hope, but submitting your work is.

Even if this next MS, when completed, doesn’t make a splash I suppose I’m stuck for good now. I’ll keep writing, keep revising, keep submitting and keep on keeping on. Hoping against hope someone someday will see some talent within me. I want to be a writer, after all, and all I can do is try.


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