The road to publication is lonely and full of potholes. Until your skin grows thick, one rejection letter after another takes a toll. Critiques from well-meaning writing partners (whom you love and trust, by the way) can leave you feeling shaken, and contest judge’s (if you go that route) comments can rip you to shreds. You persevere in the hopes that you will one day feel that brass ring in your hot little hand. It’s a roller-coaster ride with bitter lessons and exhilarating triumphs. Imagine putting your ego into a wooden barrel and sending it hurtling over the edge of Niagara Falls. That’s pretty much what the Write Road feels like. Along the way, you work at becoming a better writer than you were. You never stop learning the craft. You never give up.
Why do I do this again? Because I have to. Because when I’m not writing, I get edgy and feel empty.
How many of you writers out there have a book that means more to you than any other you’ve written? I do. Over the years, I’ve honed my craft, and I can honestly say that this book isn’t my best. But for some reason, I couldn’t give up on the story or the characters. I couldn’t shove it in a drawer and forget about it.
So many writers are self-publishing these days, and I considered going in that direction. I don’t feel equipped for such an undertaking. Between you an me, I can’t afford to hire a cover artist or an editor, and I’m technologically challenged. I don’t want to deal with ISBNs, and formatting. I just want to write. So, I kept putting that favorite story out there. I kept getting into that barrel and hurling myself over the edge of the falls. I got so close so many times. Maybe that’s why I couldn’t give up. Intermittent reinforcement can be a bitch.
I’m happy to say I finally found a home for that orphan, but that’s not really the point here. It’s all about the Write Road with all it’s potholes and pitfalls. Some come to that Y, and veer off to other adventures. I can’t make my feet change direction. Can you? I think I’m on this road for good.