Take a Moment to Say “Thank You”

I talk a lot about writing and the many challenges I face in doing it. Sometimes I complain about how much time it takes or how I hate waiting.

Bitch, bitch, bitch. It feels like that is all I do some days.

I know I celebrate some of the triumphs but I just realized that I have sorely neglected to say two words to a number of very important people.

Thank you.

I talk about my obligations to my family all the time but I don’t think I’ve ever said just what my family has done to allow me to pursue this dream of mine. Let me fix that (major) oversight on my part.

First and foremost, let me say just how amazing my family is. They tiptoe around the house (sometimes) when they know I’m trying desperately to get my writing and/or my podcasting done. They might want to visit, or watch a loud movie or simply hoot and holler and have fun, but they give me the quiet I sometimes need when I need it.

They also give me the time to create. I know my wife, son and daughter all have things they want to do with me and I also know they often will postpone those activities so I can sit down at the keyboard and write.

There can be no greater evidence of that sacrifice than the month of November and no greater time than this year. I’m trying to do NaNoWriMo, finish the edits on my novel, produce three episodes of my podcast and a host of other things too. To say my time is at a premium would be to understate the value of the word premium. My son has started some activities that he would dearly love to have me involved in but I have been able to only provide occasional time for. Still he soldiers on and reports his progress every night. My wife has things she wants/needs me to do that are on a temporary hold. My daughter is in the same boat. It can be frustrating for them and I appreciate the sacrifice of time they give me.

When I first got started with writing I struggled. I wrote the first chapter of my first novel so many times it is pathetic. I needed a way to get past that and move on to chapter two, but how? I thought about writing courses, but  I could never find anything that looked like it would work for me locally. When I did find a course (via correspondance) it was hella-expensive for a family that had very little money. My wife knew of my struggles (how could she not) and encouraged me to sign up any way.

That course made a HUGE difference for me. It made me look deep into the writing and actually learn the proper mechanics. It gave me the kick to get past that first chapter and finish the book and it gave me the tools to keep improving.

Then there are the conventions and other writing related activities and memberships that cost money (and time). My wife never thinks twice about them. She constantly encourages me to go and helps me to find ways to attend them. And make no mistake, they are important. It will be because of the conventions (and other writing related activities) that I will get my first book published. Of that I am certain.

No, I could never have gotten this far without my family’s active support and sacrifice. To them I can only say “Thank you” and “I love you all.”

But they are not the only ones who have supported me. There’s also the legion of friends and well wishers who have put up with my constant chatter about writing and my progress in it. I’m sure there have been times when you have started to feel your eyes glaze over but you still listened and offered words of encouragement. To all of you, I also say thank you. I don’t know about all writers, but I’m certainly one who needs to hear positive things and encouragement to keep moving forward.

As I have said many times before, writing can feel like such a solitary activity. It’s important to remember that behind the solitude is an army of supporters and it is the community of family and friends that make the activity that is writing worthwhile.

So, to all of you, I say “Thank you” for you past, present and future support. I couldn’t do it without you.

Personal Update

I didn’t quite get the 25K words finished by the end of the weekend like I had hoped, but by the time of this writing I will have exceeded 26,000. Not bad for 11 days.

I’m also finished this round of edits on my novel and it has been officially sent to the editor. My fingers are crossed harder than ever.

I hope you’re all doing well too in your projects.


One comment

  1. That’s great Michell. We all need a support system. It’s great to hear you praise them, it sounds like they’re really behind you when it comes to your writing. That’s pretty amazing. Best of luck on breaking in with that first manuscript, I really hope it happens for you soon, but I know if it doesn’t it eventually will. Keep at it speed hands, you’re typing rate is crazy fast! And I’ll keep at it as well.

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