there are these two ladies:
and they are awesome. we all connected on twitter, but since then, i’ve met bria in real life because we’re both in the great state of massachusetts. we’re working on getting jessica up here for a visit, but until that time, we’ve settled into a nice little routine of google chatting, emails and of course, twitter-ing.
we’re all writers, but we’re each in a very different stage of the publishing process (jessica’s book AFTER YOU comes out from Dial Books For Young Readers (an imprint of Penguin) in spring 2013, bria is agented, and i’m at the bottom of the curve), so it got us thinking — what does the world look like from from where we each stand?
and thus, a monthly column was born. we each write about a topic from our unique perspectives.
today’s topic: how we got to where we stand today.
*waves* i am at the beginning. *waves more*
despite having my MFA in creative writing and having one finished MS under my belt (and locked securely in a drawer where no one will ever read it again), i didn’t truly get serious about obtaining the holy grail of getting published until recently. for the first time in my life, i had trouble sticking to deadlines because i was the only one who knew about them. there was no accountability. no one to push me. no one to read my work.
i had to press pause while i evaluated this goal i’d always dreamed of.
i have such amazing memories of reading throughout my childhood that i’ve always wanted to return the favor. i wanted to pass along that reading experience to generations younger than me, but was i cut out for it? did i have a story to tell? characters to breathe life into? did i have the right motivation? did my words work?
after a month long pause, i decided that YES, i did want this, but i was going to have to start from scratch. first came alexis and her critiquing skills. then came bria and her disaster drafting. and deadlines. and accountability. then came the epiphany. and another one. and here i am, today.
at the starting line.
my main goal is to finish the manuscript i’m working on now. that’s it. to start and end a manuscript. to know i can. i officially started work on this manuscript in september 2010, but really, truly began in earnest in september of this year. i’ve got 35K words and lots of good habits and my next (more specific) goal is to finish this by the end of november. then i’ll let it marinate before i go back to flesh it out and revise and edit and revise and revise and revise.
depending upon what shape it’s in then, i may turn to the next step — looking for an agent — or, most likely, this manuscript will end up next to my other one locked away in a drawer. i believe this MS is here for practice. like all things in life, in order to get good-er, you have to practice. and the only way to practice writing is to write.
i plan on doing just that.
so as i stand here the beginning, i’m filled with excitement (at the possibility of reaching my goal) and a touch of frustration (at how difficult, how far, how tough that goal is), but ultimately, this is a hopeful place to be in because the only direction from here, the bottom, is UP.