I mentioned it before but it bares repeating, I am a woman with several irons in the proverbial fire. Yesterday I let you in on our big family goal. Today I want to talk about a goal that’s a little more personal. THE number one day dream…my novel.
I have wanted to be a writer since I was old enough to tell a story. I was even published in a magazine when I was in grade school. My teachers sent me to conferences for young writers. My stories tended to run on the dark side, even as a kid. This left a certain teacher to “suggest” I needed to see a counselor. That was enough to squash my fragile confidence.
I told myself I could be other things. For a while I wanted to be an oceanographer, but I really just liked Sharks. I’m drawn to mysterious predators. Then I thought I could be a history teacher or better yet an english teacher. That didn’t feel right either. I went to vocational school to be a massage therapist. I was good at it and aced my classes, but even my teacher said that I’m smart enough to make it but I’d be board in a year. Guess what I don’t do now?
In my heart I’m a writer. Fast forward to my late 20’s. This idea for a paranormal romance novel just stuck in my head. It became an obsession. It hasn’t been easy. There have been many false starts, and my first draft has been lost to a crashed computer, not once, but twice. At least after the first time I start printing as I went.
Then I hit my stride thanks to another book. “First Draft In 30 Days” By Karen Wiesner saved my novel. I believe in resources and this is a great one. It gave me a template on how to work efficiently to get it out of my head and onto a page. I didn’t do everything she suggested, the way she suggested. I used it as a model and did what felt right. Really with any good how-to source I feel that’s an excellent strategy. After all, no two projects or people are a like.
It took me 2 months but in the end I finally had an outline. The single most genius piece of knowledge I gleaned from that book is why you should love an outline. It’s this simple. The blank page. Because of my outline, I never had to face it. I had a road map to tell me what should happen next and my imagination just had to paint the picture. Brilliant!
Then the accident happened. I spent 3 months on my back, at home. No going to work for me. I was bored out of my mind! Thank goodness I had an outline waiting for me. A couple of days before I went back to work I finished it. The first draft of the first novel I had ever written and I did it before I turned 30!
Confession time…One year, a baby and closing on 31, where is my first draft? Sitting on my hard drive and in a binder. That’s right, I gave birth twice in a year to a book then a baby and only the baby has shown growth. Sad, I know.
I do have something I didn’t have when I started my first draft. My confidence came back. I can’t put a price on that. And you know what’s really cool? I have ideas for future novels! So I’m giving my self a kick in the pants to take this the distance. I’ll keep you up to date as I edit and rewrite my second draft. Fingers crossed I’ll be published before I’m 32.