Manuscripts

I’ve Been Writing a Book for Six Years

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I’ve been writing a book for six years. You may think you know how long six years is but you don’t. It’s not just 72 months, or 2,190 days, or even 52,560 hours. It’s my sons first birthday. An undergrad degree that’s a measly year away from being achieved. Adventures into online dating. A wedding that consumed my every thought. My mom’s cancer scare. And now I’m here. Writing about writing this book for six years.

Just finish the damn book already! I hear your screams of annoyance. Maybe those are mine actually (sorry). The truth is…sometimes I just don’t feel like writing it. Sometimes there are other stories in my bones. Nonfiction stories that I like to call life. These stories have sometimes gotten in the way. They are oh so entertaining, heartfelt, and real that sometimes my main character has to wait to find out the big secret because I can’t get around to putting that sordid scene down on paper. So, in an effort to discipline myself where my writing is concerned, I’m reading several articles about building discipline as a writer instead of actually writing.

Did I mention I’ve been writing this book for six years?

When the distractions of everyday life are not throwing pebbles at the window of my writing study, I haggle with more internal conflicts. Some professionals say that you can’t rush the artistic process. This is true, but, you can stifle it with worry and doubt. You can sadden it by being underwhelmed by your unique story; even though it’s all you have. I worry that I don’t know enough to contribute anything of substance to the literary community. I haven’t traveled the world. I don’t have a refined palate (Burger King anyone?). I’m not exceptionally good at science or finance (overdraft fees can be avoided? Stop kidding!). I’m not even close to being in shape and my baby carriage came way before the marriage. But, I am good at a lot of things and great at a select few.

I’m great at conveying human emotion through written word. I’m great at it because I find joy and peace in it. I’m a great writer because I worry if my contribution is enough. That’s fantastic. It means that I respect the art of story-telling, chronicling real life in real-time for future generations, and the innovative and passionate desire to entertain the masses. I’ve loved the sound of a ball point pen on crisp paper since I was a child. That hasn’t changed. And it is because of this one constant — this vein that just keeps on streaming passion in– that I’ve been writing my book for six years. I refuse to stop until I have a finished product that I can present to the world. Until I have perfectly bound copies of my thoughts and my imagination floating bi-coastal on iPad’s, smartphones, stuffed into purses, and carried in back packs I will not be fulfilled. Which is why…I’ve been writing this book for six years.

I’ve started the book from the top again. I’m going to share it with you; it in all its glory BUT I’m also going to share the detours. Those wonderful detours of a wife, mother, sister, daughter, and friend and I’m going to have fun doing it. The beauty is in the balance and even though this can’t be the right way to go about it, it’s the only way I know how. Lord have mercy on my writing soul.

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