My Real Writing Life

Being a writer is tough. My journey to write and publish books began nearly four years ago, and when I started, my biggest concern was figuring out how to turn my ideas into a story long enough to be considered ‘a book’. I spent hour after hour reading, writing, editing and reviewing works by other people, having my own works critiqued and all of it was rewarding but exhausting. But I loved to write and my dream of publishing kept me going.

Speed ahead to today. I’ve three books written, have three others in progress and plenty of short stories in my portfolio. I’ve been busy. But that’s not all. Everyone knows that writing a book is only the beginning. An author must have a platform, must be integrated in social media to connect with readers and others in the market. You have to have a business plan, must devote hours to this thing that might have started out as a hobby but has now become a realizable Dream. This is the hard part. It’s the stuff that sucks your energy dry, takes away from the time needed to write, and in some cases, even drains away some of the excitement of even being a writer.

So this is where I’ve been these last few weeks. When The Purple Morrow came out, the days of being an ‘aspiring author’ ended and I became a ‘published author’. Money is now involved because I have copies of my book to sell. I have to get out into the community and connect with local merchants, you know, build a local reputation for myself. This is a career I’m trying to build, after all, one that will hopefully thrive online as well as in the ‘real world.’ It’s great and fun, yet it’s also daunting.

So, this morning I woke up in a panic. I’d been off my marketing/promotional game for the last few weeks as I suddenly didn’t know what my game plan was anymore. I keep reading articles about what writers SHOULD be doing, but there’s so much to actually do I just blocked it all out because it was overwhelming. But when I got up this morning I had the sense that it was time to Act. So I did. I started by emailing some contacts I’d been procrastinating.

From bubblews.com

From bubblews.com

That led me on to something else. There was a certain book store I’d been trying to get a hold of but hadn’t been able to find the number to. Last week, my mother left me an excited message: she’d been to the bookstore and told the owner about my book and he was interested in selling it on consignment. Being a little shy to make a cold call, I put it off. A few days later I emailed him but got no answer, probably because of Christmas. So this morning, I bucked up and called. What an amazing surprise! This wonderful, cheerful woman named Dana answered (my frazzled nerves immediately dissipated) and guess what? At that exact moment, she’d just opened my email to read! 30 minutes later, I’d dressed, packed up the kids and was driving 40 minutes to the Dorval Christian Book Depot.

Dana and I at the Dorval Christian Book Depot

Dana and I at the Dorval Christian Book Depot

Now, why’s this important? Talking with her and seeing how excited she was about the book reignited my own excitement about what I was doing and why I did it. It reminded me of the anticipation of holding a brand new book in my hand and not being able to wait to dig into it. Then my kids got into it.

“Mom, in your next book, can you write about a lizard?” asked my 7 year-old.

I smiled and said, “Baby, the last story you helped me with had a dragon. That’s sorta like a lizard.”

But the joy I saw in my kids’ eyes and smiles touched me. They were proud to talk to Dana about my books and stories, so much so that they wanted to help with the upcoming ones. On the way home, my 9 year-old started making up a story (for me) about a dragon and before I knew it, he was up to chapter 5! It was a great story filled with knights and volcanoes and a kind old dragon with a pile of gold. I just smiled to myself as I drove and realized that this was my true writing life. Writing is more than following a business plan, or trying to find the best marketing strategies, or getting frustrated about not being able to find inspiration for a project. It’s the impact my stories have on other people, the positive feedback I get from a reader, the excitement I hear in a person’s voice when they ask about the sequel. It’s the imagination triggered in my Β kids when they are given the confidence to dream because of what I have chosen to do. Writing really can touch people’s lives.

Frigate

Being a writer is many things. Today, I had a pleasant reminder of just why I do it and because of that, I feel encouraged and strengthened to get back on that horse and to keep on keeping on. I hope you are encouraged too. πŸ™‚

Thanks for reading!

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About Dyane

Dyane Forde’s love of writing began with an early interest in reading and of words in general. Writing has been a life-long passion and she writes all types of things, from short stories, novels, flash fiction and poetry. Dyane writes to communicate, meaning that writing becomes a means through which she seeks to connect with people on a level deeper than intellect.
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26 Responses to My Real Writing Life

  1. Well said and a great dose of perspective for all of us. Now, what I’m wondering is if your mom made the connection with the book store, why did you think it was a cold call? πŸ˜‰

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  2. You truly are and inspiration, Dyane. One day I will say I knew her when . I wish you all the success in the world xx

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    • Dyane says:

      You have so much faith, Yolanda! I definitely have to keep you around!!!! πŸ˜€ Thanks so much for being such a faithful reader and commenter. I look forward to every one.

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  3. Nicki says:

    Wow, such a great post! I love reading about not only your adventures, but your emotions along the way. It is very inspiring, and I’m proud of you! Keep it up! I am always looking for updates on here. Have a great new year!

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    • Dyane says:

      Thanks, Nicki. πŸ™‚ It’s important to me to be real in these posts but to also weave in inspiring notes. Trying to do this (succeed in writing) on your own is really hard but there are some great lessons to get from these experiences, lots of opportunities to be challenged and grow and that’s what I like to focus on. And hearing from you guys is soooo inspiring to me. I appreciate every message and word of encouragement; they keep me going. πŸ™‚

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  4. Carl Sinclair says:

    Great article matey. 2014 is going to be a big one for you.

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  5. Wishing you and your family a wonderful and happy new year!
    Madi

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  6. DS McKnight says:

    This is why I love reading your posts – I think you have a direct line to my writing heart!

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    • Dyane says:

      Aw, thanks! That just made my day πŸ™‚ I’m so happy to know that you relate to what I’ve been feeling/going through. I really appreciate your message.

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  7. Swati says:

    This is a very inspirational piece of article.. enjoyed reading about your experiences and feelings for reading and writing.. My all best wishes for you!! πŸ™‚

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  8. Zoe Dune says:

    Reblogged this on Thee Incendiary Witchboard and commented:
    Wow. Everything a writer fights for… happened here.

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  9. Your journey is inspirational, Dyane. Wishing you lots of luck for 2014!

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  10. Katie Cross says:

    I hear that the most challenging part of writing a book comes with the marketing. You’re doing great! Oh, and I can’t wait to read your book on lizards as well πŸ˜‰

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    • Dyane says:

      It is, Katie. It’s fun when it works, and tackling new challenges is rewarding but they are challenges. πŸ™‚

      Lol and thanks. The little one and I will be starting brainstorming sessions on lizards shortly!

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