Thursday, November 5, 2009

Rather Write Than Breathe


I recently attended a romance writer’s conference held in Park City, Utah. The setting was breathtaking, the company wonderful and the food absolutely delicious.

The conference was a wonderful experience. The speakers—editors, agents, authors—were inspirational and their workshops full of invaluable information to any writer, beginner to published. Although inspired by the conference, I learned two discouraging facts: I’ll never be published by a large house, and I can’t write.

I WILL NEVER BE PUBLISHED
The reason for this is because of my life. With disabilities including Diabetes, Chronic Fatigue Immune Dysfunction and Fibromyalgia as well as a mother of two autistic children, I can only write about one book a year. Apparently in order for publishers to be interested, you must be able to crank out at least four to five books a year—a definite drawback for me. Despite not being prolific, I do want a chance to share my love of story, make enough money to support my writing habit, to encourage other challenged writers and enjoy a little escape into my character’s lives.

Well, don’t go feeling too sorry for me. I have published three books. But the small e-publishing company I’m with doesn’t provide any promotional opportunities except my books listed on their website. With all of the challenging issues I face, it would be nice to have this added help that only a larger publishing house can give.

I CAN’T WRITE
The second thing I learned is: I can’t write. One of the agents brought an eight page list of self-editing tips. By the time I applied all of the corrections to my current manuscript, there wasn’t a sentence unturned.

I have to admit both of these revelations were humbling experiences but also very rewarding. Surprisingly, I’m not discouraged. I may never be the next JK Rowlings or Stephenie Meyer, and I may struggle with the written word, but I love to write. Whether I can write perfectly is irrelevant. A love for writing shines through the written word as the soul shines through the most troubled body. Here’s to all those writers who would rather write than breathe.

3 comments:

  1. Hi Cindy,
    I too found Kelly's self-editing pages very educational--and a little discouraging--as you said because so much of my writing is flawed. Just remember that Kelly's is just one opinion and don't kill your voice to follow someone else's rules. And I find it encouraging that I can at least recognize bad writing when I am instructed in how to look for it.

    Happy writing! One book a year sounds great to me!
    Jennifer Beckstrand

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  2. Cindy,
    Don't let one book a year discourage you. One really good book a year is worth far more than a dozen mediocre ones. Pour your heart and soul into that one and you'll find a home for it. Many very successful authors only write one book a year.
    As for the edits list you received... find your voice and remember the "unique" in "unique". Don't let someone else's rules edit yours out. :)
    Believe in yourself and don't give up on your dreams! You've been given this desire and talent for a reason.
    Jo Ann Jones

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  3. Cindy I loved your blog. The conference was awesome and I loved talking to you. I to learned I couldn't write but then again, there are more than two sets of eyes out there. I looked at the things I could improve on and it was nice having another writers point of view. Gave me the desire to strive higher. I need to let the words out and not conform to what people think I should write.
    Your laughter and humor are contagious, you warm my soul and make me think how lucky I am to know you and all the women in our group

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