It's October 16th. As I spend too much time on the NaNoWriMo forums, helping others, critiquing, answering questions, and pounding out the details of my own novel, I have to ponder this mad rush.
This year, it marks the beginning of my writing career.
Now, I've been a writer from the day I learned I could write 50 word books on notebook paper and staple them together. I've always wanted to be a published author. And yet, somehow I never even really tried all that hard. Why?
Laziness, mostly. Not fear of rejection, not fear of failure. I've always been confident enough in my writing ability that I am certain that one day, somehow, someone will publish my novels and actually pay me for them. It's all about lack of commitment and lack of motivation. I just never sat down and wrote my books.
Another reason has been distraction. Fanfiction is the biggest culprit. There's one thing I can say for fanfic... it kept me writing. The problem is, it took the effort away from the stuff I can actually make money on! If I had spent half the effort on my original fiction that I did on fanfic, I could have been a published author by now.
I'm 27. I have a daughter, and I'm not getting any younger. I'm more mature, and I have a better grasp of the things people want to read, what I want to read. And I think I write a lot better than many published authors out there. So, I'm going to do it. Parenthood has made me grow up a lot, made me more focused, and taught me that if I try hard enough, I can accomplish anything. And so I will.
Here's to the dawn of a new career. Thanks, Chris Baty. And thanks, NaNoWriMo, all of its crazy participants, novelist wannabes, superlative successes and abject failures. Most of all... thanks to my daughter, who has given me the motivation to just do it.
This one's for you, Lisa.