Greetings Fierce Friends!
Well, I got the good word from my editor last week that Highland Rebel is a better, stronger, book and that she liked all the rewrites! Whew!! It's very strange to me that after writing romance novels for fifteen years I'm still paralyzed with fear when waiting for my editor to approve or disapprove my writing! But I think most writers have experienced some variety of this, whether published or not. The inner dialogue in our heads goes something like this : "My book is terrible." "Why did I ever think I could do this?" "What if this is the time she sends it back and says 'No way!'" and the inevitable "I don't think I can take one more rejection!"
As a writer I have threatened to stop writing and 1) take up knitting 2) get a real job 3) give up. Believe me, my life would be much easier if I did any of these choices. Writing is hard, hard work, and the hardest part of it is that Life doesn't cooperate. It doesn't matter that you have the flu when you get your rewrites. They have to be in within a week, or if you're lucky, two. It doesn't matter if your family has a major crisis, or death, and you're still only halfway finished with your book and suddenly feel unable to keep writing. Well, of course it matters, editors are human after all, but they also answer to bosses who are pretty much all about business most of the time. Being able to 'go with the flow' is a big part of being a full-time writer. and the keywords are adapt, persevere, and endure!
So why don't I hang it up? Well, because I'm a writer. It isn't what I do, it's what I am. There are all of these stories knocking around inside my head, demanding to be given life and I have to give them all their chance! There's just this true and earnest need inside of me to create, to weave words into the best story I possibly can. To take the glimmer of an idea and develop it into something fun or poignant or romantic or all of the above.
Sure, there are pitfalls and frustrations and at times I feel like this is going to be the time when I say "I quit!" But then I'll be sitting outside just thinking and suddenly I'll get this incredible idea for a new book and I'm caught up again in the whole crazy process. And what about those ideas I haven't had time to write about yet? I can't just let them languish and die. They're like old friends, just waiting in the wings for their chance to come outside and play.
So I may grouse and groan and complain about the writing life, and especially dealing with the publishing world, but the truth is that I'm a writer, and I can't imagine my life without the joy and challenge of using words to paint the pictures inside my head. And if it hurts sometimes, well, a little pain just comes with the territory. But it's worth it.
Keep Writing Fierce Friends, and Don't Give Up!