Have you ever thought “if only I could?”
Of course, you have. Advertising caters to that desire. You know, ads that say ‘if I can do ___ (insert a topic – lose weight, start a business, learn a new language), so can you‘. Usually they contain ‘before’ and ‘after’ pictures or testimonials. We all push those thoughts around in our minds. They percolate, bubbling to the surface, teasing our collective senses. Sometimes they resemble the pictures of La Brea tar pits. You know, those blobs of black tar that puncture the earth’s surface and spread to capture anything around them.
My dream was like that. I’ve spent years reading romance, loving the immersion and fantasizing about the characters. That’s what entertainment reading is for me. Losing myself. Being transported to other worlds where my physical body is more perfect than it really is and the love of my life sends me into fits of sensual bliss. *Sigh*
But I never thought I could write something swoon worthy.
And so I puttered along, reading voraciously, making my contribution to the economy, especially after eReaders and one-click purchasing came along. But I felt guilty. I was using online reviews to help with my selections. Why wasn’t I paying that forward?
I began posting reviews. It was fun and gratifying when people contacted me to say my efforts helped them.
Then romance-ageddon hit.
I read several romance books in succession that frustrated me and not in a good way. The dilemma? Write a string of less-than-positive reviews or do something else? My inner voice said, ‘Don’t like it? Write your own.’
Yeah, right. I’m no author.
It got louder, more insistent, woke me up at night. I ignored it.
While cruising over Twitter (which I’m still learning – I’m a technology dinosaur – a blog topic worthy of its own post), I discovered an editor/coach whose style resonated. She’s in your face honest about – ‘You wanna write? Then get off your ass and do it.’
Whoa. Are you seeing a convergence here? I did.
So this neophyte, clueless grandmother with a vague idea for a book signed up for a 4-week class on writing a novel. On May 4, I found myself among several talented people who were published or had completed works. All of them knew how to do this thing called writing.
Except me. I was in way over my head. And I knew it.
I have to apologize to my fellow participants because I didn’t add much to the class. Actually, I was too terrified to open my mouth. (And anyone who knows me would be stunned by that admission.)
When the class ended, I signed on for the next one. And the next one. Insecure much? Um, yep.
At 6 pm on August 7, I wrote the final period in my 67,000+ word first draft.
Did’ja catch that? May 4 to August 7, vague idea to full length novel. Whoa.
I’d like to say that it’s full of melodic words, gossamer threads wafting down, tantalizing, taunting you just beyond your grasp, reaching in to wrap around your heart, changing your world for the better.
What? No, no. That’s not me. I’m not that poetic, lyrical writer who stirs the senses with just the right combination of words screaming up the bestseller charts.
I’m Lucy. With a story that makes me sigh, giggle and tingle with a little swoon. And I’m damn proud of that fact.
So back to the original question — “If only I could?”
Sorry to add to the marketing hype but… sure you can.