Hello, Fan Club!
Yes, I know...you're wondering who I am. It's me, BETHANY!! I know it's been a long time since I've posted (3 months...that's TERRIBLE!) but I'm busy, guys, working on something VURRRY IMPORTANT. I'm having great fun with it, and I sure, sure, SURE hope you all get to read it before too long, but until then, I thought I'd recycle this post I did last year for Write All Year. Even though I wrote it, (so technically I should know this stuff already) I found huge encouragement when I read it after it was re-posted back in August.
It's super easy to get down about this whole writing thing. This post reminded me (#ironic) of just why we have to keep doing it. I hope you can relate to it as much as I did...both as the writer of it and a believer in it.
Feeling blue about this whole ‘writer’ thing, eh?
Well, if you were hoping for a delicate, stroke-your-hair kind of pep-talk over a bottle of chardonnay and some scented candles, than I’ve got some bad news for you. I’m not here to soothe your writerly woes*. In fact, the only reason I’m here is to tell you the truth about being a writer…and exactly why you can’t quit.
Here’s the skinny: Being a writer sucks.
It sucks to fall face first into a plot hole you can’t seem to climb out of.
It sucks when agents (finally!) respond to your toiled-over query with a generic, “It’s not right for me,” email.
It sucks when yesterday your manuscript was a brilliant, future best-seller and today it’s little more than a 12 point, double-spaced pile of horse sh*t.
It sucks when everyone you know is getting a new agent/deal/sale/option.
It sucks that no one in your real life understands why you’re so stressed/anxious/depressed all the time.
It sucks that SUBJECTIVE has become a four letter word.
Except for when it doesn’t.
Like that day when your characters finally kiss. The giggles that escape your blushing cheeks the very moment your fingers pause on the keyboard and their lips press against the other’s for the first time doesn’t suck at all. In fact, it’s pretty amazing.
And that feeling you get when someone not related/married/in-debt to you reads your book and tells you they loved it…that doesn’t suck either. Not at all.
And of course there’s that indescribable sense of accomplishment that comes when you type those glorious words, THE END, and it finally dawns on you that you’ve done something huge; something that is completely unique and born solely from your own imagination. Something that no one else in the world can claim as their own. That most definitely does not suck.
Of course there will be days when you think the struggle isn’t worth it anymore. You will scream to the heavens that it’s not fair, or that life would be so much easier if you didn’t want this so bad. Thing is…you do want it, bad, and no matter how hard you try, you’ll never be able to shake that desire because being a storyteller is in your DNA. It’s literally part of the fabric that makes you who you are; it’s sandwiched right there between the color of your eyes and your disdain for Lionel Richie. And even if you abandon your notebook forever, you would still be crafting stories in your head and in your heart. So the way I see it, you might as well get them on paper because at least then there’s a chance you’ll get paid for them. (Seven-figure deals…obviously).
So, my fellow writers, do yourself a solid and suck it up. I promise it’s worth it.
*(And for the record, despite my above bluntness, I am not that friend who will tell you that your butt looks big in your jeans. Although…come on, we both know that just because you can get into the jeans doesn’t mean they actually fit.)