As we all know, writing a novel is a solitary endeavor. It’s just us, sitting alone at our computers, trying desperately to somehow translate our daydreams into stories that others will hopefully appreciate.
For me, this experience is a new one. While I’ve been writing news and public relations content for years, my efforts in novel writing have been of the start-and-stop persuasion. I pretty much had no idea what I was doing, with no support or guidance in sight. So discouragement always won out.
I had always scribbled my thoughts in a notebook when I was young. But in college I tried to move forward by taking a creative writing class. I dropped out halfway through the semester when there was more mocking than critiquing.
I never found success at local writing groups, either. I’m not sure why, but they just didn’t seem to work for me.
Looking back, I can’t fault either of these formats. Lots of people flourish in either, or both, of these situations. Maybe I just wasn’t ready. For a long time, I did have a lot going on in my life that left little room for novel writing.
Despite my lack of time, support that worked for me, and knowledge of the novel-writing process, I still wanted to tell my stories. But I spent years with no direction while penning ideas without taking them any further.
That is, until a few months ago when I started my current WIP. Fortunately, I’m finally in a place that allows me to carve out time to work on it. Plus, my defeated attitude has given way to excitement about one day seeing my work completed. A big part of that about face is that I finally have a little more insight into the process, as well as a support system that works for me.
Thanks to social media, I’ve been able to network with like-minded people all over the world. It may not seem like much; but being able to give and receive encouragement from other aspiring authors gives me that boost I need to keep at it. So does the advice I get from those who are much more experienced than I am at the novel-writing process.
It’s an incredible feeling to finally be able to put one foot in front of the other and be moving forward in my novel-writing journey.