I love the impact of a word. I love the feel of the keyboard beneath my fingertips and watching a world, a world that did not exist, come alive as I write.
I have always loved that. In elementary school, when the teacher would give us our assignment of drawing a picture (an artist I most certainly am not) and then write a story about it, my inner writer would be cheering. It excited me. A research paper? I loved it. Keep a daily journal in a spiral notebook for English—I will.
Now ask me how I felt about Math, Chemistry and Home Economics . . . I didn’t like them at all. I scraped by enough in math, barely. Chemistry was a bad mistake (I’ll have to tell you about blowing up gas bubbles and the trouble that caused later). Home Economics--WHOA. My pillowcases came unstitched. My baby quilt was a dangerous choking hazard. My sewing machine always jammed. My food always burned, and never, EVER, did it look like the teacher’s demonstration. I took one year of Home Economics and knew I had enough of that (thus my lack of home economic skills in this here present day). Simply put, I knew Home Economics was not my forte. I did try wood shop, but the machines scared me to death (at the beginning of the term, the teacher showed us a video of people falling onto drill bits and becoming impaled or losing limbs from the same machines we were expected to use—super nice, huh?).
But, boy oh boy, Creative Writing and English . . . I was sliding into my desk, just ready to be told to go ahead and write something.
I went on to get my B.A. in English from Utah State University (technical writing emphasis, because EVERYONE knows fiction writers make squat). By the way, technical writing is not fun. Has very little to do with creativity. Not very enjoyable at all.
Yep, a degree in English. I can’t spell. I can’t diagram a sentence to save my life, and my grammatical skills are lacking. But guess what? They gave me the degree anyway and it’s mine . . . wah,ha,ha . . . it’s mine. No take backs.
So here I am, how many years later, wanting to become a professional writer. I am a writer. I embrace that title. But once I actually get paid for my writing, then I can call myself a professional writer. Professional Writer—sounds nice, has a lovely ring to it. Money sounds nice too :)
But in the world of subjective publication and all the various hoops an aspiring writer has to jump through and doors that need to be knocked on to become a professional writer, I may as well be aspiring to become the president of the moon or a dancing fairy princess. The writing world is a tough world.
And for the most part, a writers world is solitary as well. It’s just you and a blank piece of paper, or in my case a blank screen with a blinking, ever mocking, curser. So writing is tough and lonely. Just me in my pj's (like I am right now) and my laptop.
But this past year has been remarkable. I have surrounded myself with some wonderful, crazy, inspiring writers, and by doing so, have opened my solitary world of writing to others. I’m not so solitary anymore. I have had more people read my work than I have EVER had. I have people to push me from behind and make me do things that I KNOW I would have never been courageous enough to do on my own--querying agents for one thing. I have jumped through hoops. I’ve made it past some hurdles--I actually have an agent presenting my work to publishers. So it’s been an exciting year for sure.
From November 2009 to November of 2010 I have written three completed books (though two are in need of editing) and I am 2/3rds done with a fourth. That’s pretty good for me. I’m thrilled. What an awesome year. Oh, and I have a blog . . . who'd a thunk?
I pray next year will be just as generous and wonderful as this year has been. Fingers crossed.