Thursday, June 6, 2013

keep on...

I haven't written here in a while, and for that I have to say sorry. I've gotten wrapped up in other things the past couple of weeks, namely the release of a book that has been a long time in coming and which now sits on my shelf--an actual book, in print, with my name on the cover.

I am beyond excited to see it, though to be honest it still doesn't really seem true even when I look up at the bookshelf across the room from my chair in the living room. It fits with the other paperbacks there, but at the same time it doesn't.

Because inside is me.

It's fiction, a fantasy, but it is me just as much as if I had been telling my life story in its pages. Other people may not see it, but every word has a little piece of me hidden inside. Every line is a glimpse into my soul. I'm on every page, my strengths, weaknesses, flaws, and beliefs there for everybody to see.

There's a quote from E.L. Doctorow that says, "Writers are not just people who sit down and write. They hazard themselves. Every time you compose a book your composition of yourself is at stake." Though I don't have much experience with it yet, so far I completely agree.

I'm excited to see my book in print, but I'm also more terrified and nervous than I would have thought possible. 

~What if people don't like what they read?
~What if nobody wants it?
~What if I don't finish anything else?
~Maybe I shouldn't have released it--will other people see how immature the writing was in the beginning, despite the changes I made?
~Are the people who know me going to think differently of me now?
~Am I just plain crazy for writing a fantasy, a story with magic and sword fights and a Healer and and escaped prisoner and a crazy old hermit and...?

The list goes on, but I'm definitely not going to bore you with all the questions that roll through my head on a daily basis now and which regularly keep me up at night, my brain refusing to shut off.

I worry about what people will think of my writing because I worry what they will think of me because of it.

The thing is, I didn't start writing The Prophecy so that people would think of me a certain way. When I first started writing it, I never even imagined putting it out there for people to read.

I wrote it because I couldn't not write it, because God has wired me in such a way that writing is as much a part of who I am as my eye color, shoe size, or name. I wrote it because God gave me a passion for writing, and even if I'm not 100% sure of His purpose for my writing (or even 10% sure, for that matter), I am sure that if He gave me a passion and a love for writing, He expects me to use it.

One of my favorite authors, Dean Koontz, wrote in The Taking, "Pages crystallizing into chapters, chapters accreting into books: The story-painting, spell-casting, truth-telling work of a novelist had seemed to be a lifelong purpose. Her mother had taught her that talent is a gift from God, that a writer has a sacred obligation to her Creator to explore the gift with energy and diligence, to polish it, to use it to brighten the landscape of her readers' hearts."

So, I'll work on silencing the questions so I can start listening to the One Voice that matters.
I'll strive to understand how this crazy dream fits into His ultimate plan for my life.
I'll explore the gift I've been given in hopes of helping just one person step out of the harsh reality he finds himself in, even if it's just for a moment.

And I'll keep writing, because I don't know how not to.

1 comment:

  1. Let me first say how AMAZING it is that I now have a book with your name on it. I'm so incredibly proud of you for getting it done, words cannot express how much. Granted, I haven't got all the way through it yet, but...what I have read, I'm intrigued, I'm captivated, and I just want to know more (and I don't normally like fantasy type books). *Disclaimer, no I'm not just saying this cause I'm biased* So, I think you have nothing to worry about. And let's just say your book was horrible (which it's not), no one (that REALLY cares about you) would ever think of you any different than the amazing person you are! Again, so very proud and happy for you!

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~Mandy