Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Guest Blogger - Gwen Mayo

Being an Author                                                                   

by Gwen Mayo

Since CIRCLE OF DISHONOR was published I have discovered that nearly everyone I meet has a book idea. Their “book” is only in their mind, or their fantasies, but they are going to write it someday—when they have time. Sane people make it sound so easy when they talk about writing a book ‘one day’.

Authors are not sane people. They may have been sane people before they started writing a book while still working jobs and juggling all their other responsibilities. Somewhere between writing, editing, submitting, learning to deal with rejection, and finally getting the book into print, sanity disappears.

I am just another crazy writer: sitting at my computer long after I should have gone to bed, squeezing pages of my current work in progress between loads of laundry or dishes. There are days when the word count has to take a back seat to the rest of my life. On a bad day, just ask me about my WIP. You’re sure to get an earful.

Don’t blame me for being a little hostile. Shaping my WIP into a finished manuscript is like trying to organize schizophrenia. I have the bones of an outline before I sit down to write, but the real work is pulled out of my twisted mind one word at a time and those words come at a steep price. If I do my work well, my characters come alive. If not, the voices in my head will rip me apart until the right story bleeds out onto the keyboard. One day my WIP will be finished. Meanwhile, I am just a bloody mess with a partial I want to rip to shreds.

The people who will write their book when they “have time” have never taken writing seriously. They have never actually had to craft a synopsis or wait for an agent or publisher to pick their book from thousands of submissions. They haven’t suffered through the writing or the submission process. They haven’t had years of work turned into another rejection form. Nor have they ever held their first novel in their hands. They don’t know the thrill of signing copies, or visiting bookstores just to admire their cover. They are not likely to ever know the feeling of seeing their name followed by that single word that makes it all worthwhile… Author.

1 comment:

  1. Gwen,
    Icouldn't have said it better myself. We are not sane or we would never have picked this profession. I decided to take a hiatis from writing books only to find that I don't fit into the sane world. I have spent far too long with multiple personalities running around in my head to just settle down with my own personality.


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