Monday, October 22, 2007

Looking back...

As I've said numerous times, one of the reasons I wanted to keep a blog was so that I could look back on my own process as it was happening. To a certain extent, I wish I'd posted more about writing The Forest of Hands and Teeth. Posted more about the process, my feelings, etc, so that I had a better record. But keeping a blog has been worth it not only for the friends I've met and the community I've become a part of, but also because of looking back on posts like this, a snippet of an email I'd sent to JP almost 1.5 years ago, half a year after I'd started writing seriously (again):

Dunno... I guess before it didn't occur to me that I couldn't do it - write and publish a novel. Now it occurs to me that I might not be able to. That maybe I'm one of those people who constantly dreams about it and thinks about it but never gets there...

You know, none of us ever knows what's in our future. There are no guarantees. However, I am a very strong believer that if you keep writing, if you push through those doubts, that you'll make it. Because there actually is one guarantee: if you quit writing, you will never have a chance at reaching your goals. There is one thing that all published writers have in common: they kept writing. Even when it was hard. Even when the doubts crowded in. Even when they were sure they'd never make it.

Happy writing, everyone!


Patrick Alan said...

Wow, what a tough(good) snippet to read.

For me, I haven't got to the point where I don't think I could do it, but it wavers back and forth.

Originally, I considered writing to be the perfect retirement hobby. Somewhere along the line I got it into my head to try and make it a career path. For me, I think making that transition in career path is difficult. It IS a second job.

Anyway, it must feel good reading that snippet now. :)

I'm reluctant to talk about my progress because when it is going bad, talking about it seems to make it worse to me. Though I generally track word count totals privately.

Carrie Ryan said...

Thanks Patrick -- it was a really interesting snippet to stumble across and I'm really glad I found it. It's def. difficult to make writing a career path because it *is* a second job and there aren't guarantees (frex, in law I pretty much know that if I work hard for the next 7 years, I'll make partner; with writing who knows if I'll even sell a third book?).

I was thinking about this last night -- JP and I don't have kids or any other obligations. For us, it's a good time to have two jobs -- all we really have to sacrifice is TV and a little extra time every day. I think it gets harder and harder the more "outside" obligations you have on your life (and it def. helps that writing is something we both love).

ORION said...

Carrie three years ago I was a teacher. Two years ago I entered a Doctoral program. I moved from career to career my whole life. It's only now as a writer with my first book published that I know I am where I belong. It took me 50 years to discover this!!
I started my blog for the same reason and it was the best idea I ever got! I can look back over the last year and see the path clearly.
I'll come and visit! Link me if you want!

Carrie Ryan said...

Oh, Orion -- I've been reading your blog for a long while now, ever since I found it through Aprilynne's (way before your book came out!) :)

Jp said...

Funny, I don't see anything in here about the wonderful words of encouragement your boyfriend gave you in that time of darkness... ;)

Erica Ridley said...

bwa ha haa, jp.

fwiw, I *never* thought you couldn't do it! when I read fht, I was full of, "omg, this rocks!" In fact, iirc, I even made many allusions to your rockitude over on my blog.

Which just goes to show. JP & I are smarter than you. (j/k!!!)

I don't doubt for a second you are on your way to a great writing career!!!