It was just over one year ago… It was a rare evening when my daughters were in bed early and I felt like doing something creative. I posted this status update on Facebook and that night I began penning my first novel (well, I actually typed it, but ‘penning’ sounds more poetic). I loved being able to bring characters to life on a page, to create conflicts for them to overcome and to see them learn a lot along the way.
My first novel was an experiment. My initial thoughts were ‘Can I actually do this?’ and as the story went on I began thinking ‘Am I able to finish this?’ As I got to the end of my novel and began to think about self-publishing, I wondered ‘Is this a book people will want to read?’ It seems that some people did want to read it after all 🙂
I’ve had positive feedback from a lot of people so far, including some helpful and constructive advice. I set about honing my skills, scanning the web for advice, devouring other people’s books – researching their use of dialogue and the way they built their characters. I studied a few on-line writing courses and used all these hints and tips to shape my next story.
The last year has been one of joy – the thrill of finishing my first novel (or novella to be technically correct), the excitement of my first review, meeting other writers online and learning more about the craft. There have been challenges too. I’ve had to deal with my heightened insecurities in putting myself out there. Finding time to write has been a challenge, particularly considering how tired I feel at the end of the day after being at work or being with my kids. Hopefully my perseverance will be worth it and God will use my writing to touch the lives of my readers.
How have you grown as a writer over the last year? What have been the highlights and lowlights?
I’d love to hear from you – feel free to post a comment below.
Over the coming weeks, I look forward to sharing with you some of the writing lessons I’ve learned over the past year.
Until next time,