Write, Right?

It’s been several months since I last wrote something worth writing.

Over the course of my six-week maternity leave, I sat back and read what I’d already written. My earlier works were horrible. (Carrie will probably disagree, lol.) My more current works definitely show improvement.

The birth of K2 brought a flood of story lines, plots, scenarios, antagonists, and protagonists to mind. Worlds began to form in my mind. Conversations between characters went from whispers to screams.

But everything’s jumbled.

So I’ve decided to type out the bits and pieces of what’s going on my head so I know where to go later.

And for now, I’m fine-tuning a paranormal and looking for a publishing house for a contemporary.

I must say, I’m excited about where writing takes me, and I’m even more excited about the people I meet through my writing. (Carrie, we’re still on for that trip in a few years, right?) And I hope that what I write does my characters justice.

Because, seriously, who wants to read a story that’s only minimally engaging?

No thanks.

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To Do or Not To Do

I write. Or, I used to write.

Pregnancy seems to have robbed me of my ability to think coherently.

I struggle with sorting through the characters’ voices in my head and getting their words onto paper. Or, more accurately, my computer.

I struggle with making it through the edits for my current contemporary without getting frustrated.

Sometimes the sentences don’t make sense. Sometimes I wonder what I was thinking when I penned a particular line or dialogue.

But, lately, I seem to cringe when I read what I have written.

I wonder how it is that anyone at all thought that what I’ve written was remotely good.

Still, this insane urge to type away on my tablet, to give my characters and their lives a sense of permanence, plagues me.

But I can’t make heads or tails of what they’re trying to tell me.

And it’s annoying.

Yet there’s a part of me that won’t give up on writing. A part of me that clings to the hope that I’ll successfully complete the contemporary I’ve written and begin another. A part of me that knows this is what I need to do.

Because I want to. Because it makes me happy. Because I find immense joy in penning the lives of characters that begin as mere thoughts in my head.

Despite what I feel, despite the hopelessness I sometimes experience, despite the doubt and questions and frustration, I choose to do.

I choose to write better than I have before, to create stories that speak life, to weave together lives that show the greatness of perseverance and love, to manufacture worlds that aren’t perfect but are perfect for my characters. I choose to create situations and characters readers can connect to, to take the impossible and make them possible, to provide not just “feel good” stories but “happily ever stories” that reflect my beliefs and emotions.

I write. Or, rather, I will write.

Again. 🙂

Find your passion

Most of us dream big as children. We have lofty visions of becoming firemen, doctors, teachers, lawyers, police officers. We dream of becoming a world-renowned sports figure, or the next great inventor. We believe we can achieve anything because there’s nothing standing in our way, nothing stopping us.

As children.

Those same dreams, visions and passions may carry on into our teenage and adult years. We might actually accomplish the goals we set out for ourselves oh-so-long-ago. We might cross that finish line, arms held high, triumph and pride glowing from the huge grin on our faces.

But what happens when life doesn’t happen like we wanted it to? What about that huge monkey wrench that threw your life into a spiral? What happens when your dreams disappear down a drain because of something you had no control over?

Human nature demands denial, anger and vengeance for what we were robbed of. After all, that dream, that goal, was my baby. Why shouldn’t I be upset?

But if all your time and energy is focused on what you had are you even noticing what you could have?

It’s easy to get caught up in a pity party, even easier to stay there when people around you don’t encourage you to move on. Empathy is a beautiful thing, comparable to a warm blanket wrapped around your shoulders after a particularly chilly day. The flip side is that too much of it sucks at your feet like a mud pit, keeping you in place, drying and hardening until standing still is all you remember how to do.

Staying there is a choice. Moving on is a choice. It’s easier to stay because… Well, emotionally driven creatures find comfort in staying in that moment of anger and betrayal. Moving on is uncomfortable and, at the moment, an unwanted notion.

But see, passion doesn’t die just because a dream fails. Your passion might remain; you’ll just have to find another way to accomplish your goal. Or your passion might shift to a completely different part of your life altogether.

That love for painting that you gave up to pursue an engineering degree might blossom now that you were rejected from MIT. That desire to be a nurse might grow now that you’ve failed the bar exam. That insane urge to own a B&B has taken root now that you were laid off from your nine-to-five office job because of budget cuts.

Passions evolve if nourished and encouraged to grow in a loving, supportive environment. My cousin over at Sweet Melissa’s Photography discovered her love for photography a year ago. My passion for writing exploded in August 2010, and has resulted in my own writer’s blog, membership to a few critiquing groups, and fine-tuning my style of writing. My cousin and I are the same age, an age when most people are settled into their careers, not looking to pursue a new one. We have husbands, children, and bills to pay. Yet we’ve found something we can both be passionate about despite our “old” age.

So before you start muttering about how much you hate your life, before you start wistfully wishing you still had that lost dream, before you wonder what you’re going to do now, think about those youthful dreams and visions. Think about how much they excited you. Think about how impassioned you were.

And, if you’re able to, act on them even if all you can do now is get a feel for whatever your passion might be. Just don’t give up yet.

Find it, find your niche, find your passion, and pursue it wholeheartedly.

Maybe – Day 7

So, my alter ego’s stuck in writing purgatory, otherwise known as writer’s block.

My current project, Edith, is almost complete. Almost.

I revised Chapters 17 and 18, and am one page into Chapter 19. One page. One!

I can’t seem to go anywhere with it. I know how I want it to progress, I know what the ultimate ending of the story’s going to be, but I don’t know how to get there.

Every time I open the file to write, my brain goes blank and I might, might, write a whole page at most. It’s not what I want. I want it done.

But I’m so frustrated I’m thinking of maybe leaving it alone and doing nothing with it. That’s how annoyed I am with it.

Truthfully though, I can’t just leave it alone. It’ll frustrate me to no end that I have a story that’s that close to being done.

*Sigh* So I’ll take back my earlier maybe and say, “I’m going to finish it.”

(Now pray that I do it soon!)

Maybe – Day 2

I was recently made aware of a growing passion of mine. You’ve heard me go on and on about my love of music and playing the piano. You’ve heard me declare my love (and sometimes my frustration) of God. You’ve heard me mention my love for B and The Kid.

And (maybe) I’ve mentioned in passing my love of writing.

I was talking to B over the weekend over a story I finished titled Emma. It’s currently being critiqued by a wonderful group I found online and once it’s polished and tightened I hope to submit it for publishing. While I was telling him about my crit group, I could see his smile growing bigger and bigger. I finally asked, “What?” to which he said, “You’re really excited about writing and I’m happy for you.”

Writing was never a first love for me. When I was a kid, I did it to mimic my older sister but I hated everything I wrote and couldn’t stand reading any of it. I didn’t think I’d ever take it up again but I did and here I am.

The “maybe” of writing a book is no longer an issue, and the “maybe” of publishing my writing is slowly turning into a yes. I don’t know if I’ll write full-time in the future but what I do know is I no longer think “maybe” when I type out a story. I think “yes.”