Yes, YOU. And, YOU. And probably, YOU. Ok, yes, even, YOU.
ALL OF YOU!!!
This community of people ~ whether you're a writer, a reader, a friend, a blogger, or maybe a person who likes to lurk in the blog corners, reading with anonymity ~ makes my heart happy. I think back to the beginnings of this blog and the amazing people I've met as a result (both in person and online), and just smile. For the most part, a good number of you, like me, are writers or book lovers, and the more I get to know you, the more we journey together, I feel like even at our most DIFFERENT, we are all very much the same.
For it is a truth universally acknowledged, that every writer in possession of a need to make words, must be in want of writer friends to journey with. (Ok, so maybe that's NOT quite how the quote goes, but I kind of like my version.)
A few writerly universal truths I've learned along the way:
1 - We're an INSECURE bunch.
Especially when it comes to our writing. I'm pretty sure it doesn't matter where in the process you are, whether you're writing a first draft/editing/polishing/revising/critiquing/querying/on submission, it's there. The fear that what you've written, what you hold most dear, won't be worthy, that *gasp* others won't see the beauty of the world you've created, that you're wasting your time, that < insert other self-depracating writerly thoughts here. >
And you know what? It's okay. It just means you're one of us. Embrace it. Bond over it. Laugh over it. It's a good fear. It's what challenges us to learn, to get better, and to excel.
2 - We NEED each other.
We do. I'm not sure I've met a writer yet who could do this thing alone. Whether it's a friend, family member, critique group, agent, editor, you name it...we need people in our corner, people who will read our words, tell us when we've got it right, and more importantly, when we've got it wrong. Writing is a solitary thing, something we each have to do alone, which makes it that much more important that we get over our insecurities in #1 so that we can achieve #2. Sure, it's SCARY as all get out sending that new project to your critique group/agent/editor for the first time, or to someone new who has never read your work, but you know what? That's the magic. There are people out there willing to share this journey with you. And you need them.
3 - Coffee/Tea/Cupcakes/Chocolate solves all manner of writer problems.
Trust me on this. If you've been around writers for any manner of time at all, you've surely realized one thing: we talk about caffeine ALOT. And food. ALOT. But not normal everyday food, no. SWEETS. Apparently most of us are into rewards. My critique group? Cupcakes. (Though, honestly, whatever sweet is nearby when the book is finished or good news comes, is a legit option. Pretty sure I celebrated with chocolate chip cookie dough filled flautas one time. And yes, they were AS DELICIOUS as they sound. I probably also gained 5 pounds after eating them. Which is why you should always reward sparingly.)
4 - Pretty sure most of us could be hermits.
Sure, we get out, we can be social, we occasionally DO things. But you know what? Most of the time we prefer to be at home. With our laptops. In our pajamas. Or sweats. We can socialize via the internet and stay inside for weeks on end (if we had the option and plenty of aforementioned caffeine). Let's face it: people who write novels that require thousands of words are perfectly okay with being alone. We have our made-up worlds to create.
5 - Benedict Cumberbatch
Okay, I really don't have a 5th thing but it seemed like I should, you know? Like a list of four is lame whereas a list of five is brilliant. And it's Friday, which is totally Benedict Cumberbatch worthy and rounds out my love of BBC television show theme. You're welcome.
Have a great weekend everyone!
Peace, love and books,