Am I not a Writer? And a Storyteller?

October 6, 2016. October 6, 2o16. October 6, 2016.

That date is spinning around my head as I look back over the past eighteen months. Man and Brother (working title: His Brother’s Keeper). That very first draft I did for National Novel Writing Month 2012 is so far from what’s being released in a week.

Mind you, this is a year and 5 days after I intended to release it, so this moment is bittersweet.

As an author, I have agonized recently over some of the most bizarre errors in the book. Double-ups of words I missed. Typographical errors, particularly involving o and i. Vanished verbs. What is most baffling of all of these? I missed them.

My brain corrected them as I ground through the document slowly. That is a cruelty of biology, that our brains make those lovely little corrections when we do not want it. Those mistakes should not have been there. Then again, I can see how exhausted I was by the number of errors.

As a writer, I was handicapped by nature. I wear eyeglasses and have since I was 17. I knew the bifocals were in my future. I knew they were coming two years ago, when I released ‘Til Undeath. And right when I needed my eyes to get that polish on Man and Brother? That’s when I needed a reader prescription added to my normal prescription. The irony was that my normal prescription hadn’t changed. I can still use those glasses, beaten up as they have been from the up-and-down and casting aside and restoring to try to see. And then? I chose progressives. It’s disorienting at first, but once I figured it out? It was game on.

I also had a relocation. Anyone who’s moved understands that life absolutely upends. This wasn’t across town, either. This was a big move that includes a dramatic climate change. While the social change is much improved, the summer was oppressive compared to what I faced when I published ‘Til Undeath. My writing resource library is packed in a storage unit. However, I have better internet connectivity in the new location, so I can get the grammar answers I need.

Getting this book out right now was a miracle, but I was in the same position as I was when I was publishing the Dome Trilogy. I was held back by similar delays then as now. The last time, I had less pushing to publish. This time . . . well, the Cryptid Series has more enthusiasm behind the scenes to see it published in a timely manner.

As I sit here trying to think of exciting things to say, I can’t muster the energy. I am thrilled. I really am. But at the moment, I still have IABOS. I miss my friends. I miss my life.

So, here’s the take away: Writing is art. It is a maze of pain and frustration, of attempting perfection and falling far short. It is tears and yelling between creator and manuscript (“Why can’t I get this scene right!!”). It crushes souls and grinds bones and breaks spirits and snaps minds.

But damn . . . when that day comes and the book is out there–as close to perfection as possible yet frustratingly imperfect? It is . . . wordless.

October 6, 2016.

5 thoughts on “Am I not a Writer? And a Storyteller?”

  1. Hi Jess. Your blog is spot on! And thanks for the IABOS link. Mwah.
    I’m so pleased for you that this book is finally done and dusted. I hope you rest up a bit before doing the next one. I’m still IABOSing, waiting for my mojo to return, but not stressing about it. You are right – writing is an art requiring creativity as well as hard slog whilst dealing with everyday life. Sounds like you’ve had quite a year, so big kudos to you for getting the book finished.
    The Round Tablers miss you, too.


    1. Hi Carole! I miss the Round Tablers, too, and hope to get back into the discussion very soon.

      And your advice about resting up . . . I don’t want to because I want to release, Release, RELEASE! However, you are 100%, inequivocally, without-any-doubts correct that I have to back off and live a little instead of write myself six foot under an engraved writer’s block.

      As for your IABOS entry, it is a must-read for writers and authors, Carole. This does happen to the Frarority (Fraternity-Sorority) of Indie Authors, since we have to hustle from first word to last sale. We don’t have big money to throw at a problem like the big publishing houses do–not like that’s helped them recently!

      So that . . . well, it is much more intense than malaise. Having malaise and ennui is a picnic compared to this experience. And then there’s the demand to keep going for those devoted readers whose word-of-mouth marketing . . . I’m getting teary and schmoopy thinking about how ineffably grateful I am to the people who clamor for more.

      So, I think your IABOS entry really touches on the struggle and rise of an indie success (yes, you! 😀 ) then the baffling and skidding halt. And it’s . . . it’s amazing that we look back and see how we battled for years much harder than when the IABOS hits!

      So, thank you for your kind congratulations and for writing your IABOS story. Big hug to you as you spring toward Summer there while I fall into winter here.


    1. Thank you, Ward! It’s been quite an adventure . . . but we both know that writing is not for the faint of heart. It is the grueling grind for individuals who love words and live myriad lifetimes in one.

      Big hug to you. Man, I am spent. Hopefully, I can bring out a draft for book three in November (NaNoWriMo), something to blast out then pare down in January.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s