When I was a teenager my cousin and I decided we were going to join the ranks of the Mills and Boon authors. We set about writing our “amazing” novel at the tender age of 15/16 with not the first clue about romance. We never did submit that manuscript that was going to make up world famous. We put away our dreams as we prepare for adulthood and didn’t think of it again for the longest time, my journey was abandoned.
When I moved a few years ago, I came across that manuscript as I was unpacking a box. With a squeak of excitement I sat down to reread it. All I’m going to say is, it was so bad I laughed while reading it. As in tears-rolled-down-my-face laughed at how bad it was. But that was where the bug bit. It lay dormant for a couple of decades as I went about the tasks of adulting – finding a job after school, getting married, having a child. You know, adulting.
About five years ago I finally got back to unpacking. Only this time I was unpacking my dreams I’d so carefully packed away all those years ago. I carefully peeled back the tissue paper and found my writing dreams nestled within. I didn’t have the courage to admit it to more than a few people in my life and chose to hide behind a pseudonym. I went about learning more about the craft and I penned a few short stories under that name. I joined a writing organisation and got to interact with amazing women who could teach me even more about the craft than I was finding on the internet.
Last year July I took my courage in both hands, stepped out into the light and committed to writing under my own name – to owning my writing and telling the world it was me. As part of my goal setting for 2018, I set my intentions that this year I would get serious about my writing. So I entered a writing competition. I still hadn’t told the world at large I was writing, but hey, one step at a time. Right?
Entering the competition meant committing to writing, regularly and with intent. No more writing a little here and writing a little there, hiding behind the story that I was working on learning how to write. Those of my family and friends who knew what I was doing rallied around and were my staunchest supporters. They cheered me on, offered support and a shoulder to cry on when I sat in front of my computer and the words wouldn’t come. They listened to me rant about writing being hard and what was I thinking when I decided that I could do this. They’d dole out hugs and kisses and “there, there’s” before gently pointing out that if this was important to me I had to keep going. So I did. I kept going because, well, this is important to me.
I had a fabulous mentor I got to work with, teaching me and guiding my. I had an accountability partner who would question me daily on my progress. And each day I pushed myself to sit in front of my laptop to write. Some days the words simply flew from my fingers onto the page and other days I swear childbirth was less painful than trying to get the words to come. But I kept at it. One day at a time I kept showing up for my dreams until the day I sat in front of my laptop, tears streaming down my face as I typed the words “THE END” at the bottom of my first full length novel.
There were any number of days that I didn’t believe I would make, that I would get to experience the joy of typing two little words that have such big meaning. But with the amazing support structure I have in my life, I did. It was one hell of a journey, but I am ever to grateful I stayed the course. And now I’m ready to do it again. LOL!
You can find a sneak peak of what I’ve been working on here. Once I’ve given the manuscript a good edit, I’ll be sharing the first three chapters of Love At Last with my subscribers so make sure you’re signed up because it’s exclusive to my mailing list. 😊 All things going well, I’ll be ready to release this baby out in the wild in the first quarter of 2019. Wish me luck.