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My Novel Journey

The Ups and Downs of Trying to Write a Novel

Writing. Some of us do it every day, and don't even think about it. I'm a chronic list writer. I write lists for everything, just so I can feel maybe a bit more organized. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn't. 

And then there are those of us who try writing for a living. Sounds great, right? Put some words on paper, and make some money. Awesome, sign me up. 

Oh, if only it were that easy. 

Writing is a bridge between people. You have the authors telling the stories, and the readers absorbing the words, immersing themselves in the world created by some of the most talented storytellers. I started reading before I was in kindergarten, thanks to my older brother, who used to use me to practice his reading. Being four years younger has its perks. I've been a reader since then, reading so many books that, eventually, plots and characters start to blend together in my head. I've been in love with books, able to really get into the head of the characters, and getting into the world created by the author.

I've also been writing for as long as I can remember. Recently, my dad told me that he remembers when I was about 11 or 12 years old, he found me writing a character profile, building a character for a novel that would never be written (moving around sucks. I don't know where the profile is anymore). That kind of struck me as odd, because I don't remember really getting passionate about writing until I was in seventh grade English, and we were tasked with writing a short story. I loved the whole process. After that, every chance I got, I was writing. I once filled a composition notebook nearly full with a prospective novel, but it never became anything. I was so passionate about writing that it occupied most of my spare time, and took up most of my concentration during my angsty teenage years (oh, the many, many awful angsty stories I wrote).

My point is, writing has all but consumed my life since I was a tween. When I made the decision that I was going to seriously start writing again, I was excited, but hesitant. I wasn’t sure what would come of my passion to write if I tried to write for a living. I didn’t want to take a freelance writing job, because for one, I’m not qualified for most of them. I never finished my college degree, and only one of the classes I took is even remotely helpful. Two, I didn’t want to be writing stuff that I might not necessarily have control over. I might be writing the words, but the underlying topic and theme wouldn’t always be something that I enjoy writing about. I would rather free write and try for novels rather than blog posts.

In the last six months, I’ve come astonishingly close to finishing a novel, and I’m immensely proud of that, because I used to get distracted by some other idea, and then abandon the previous story, never to return my attention to it. But I’ve stuck with this one, except for lately, battling writer’s block. My creativity is bound up tighter than a sailor’s knot. It’s been about a month since I’ve done much significant writing, and I’ve been itching to write again, but haven’t been able to really get into the story again. I thought taking a break would help, but it seems to only delay me more, and prolong the block. I fear that this novel may have stagnated, but there’s really no way to know, until I get back to it.

Until then, look for updates on my journey to writing a novel. Who knows, this time next year, you could be reading the next best thing by an up-and-coming author.


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