I was going to write about a different topic. One that my latest polished manuscript made me think about yesterday. However my concentration is shot because I have a polished manuscript and am entering that phase of writing that is the most stressful. Not the most painful, but the most stressful.
The painful part will come next. After the immense amount of work spent researching, preparing, and hitting send. There will follow the waiting and then the rejections. They’re bound to happen. To some degree or another, they must be expected.
That’s when I began thinking…
How many projects do I query before I chuck it all and move to a cabin in the woods to live a hermit life of writing? That’s right. Just go and write manuscript after manuscript, leaving them piled in a room somewhere for years and years.
I’ll go into town from time to time and the children will watch me from behind buildings, snickering, gasping and running away when I look. The shopkeepers will talk pleasantly to me, then discuss the terrible things they believe I’m doing all alone in the woods. They’ll have me burying bodies and hoarding animals and being completely insane because I stay up all night with the blue glow of a computer screen flooding from my windows.
I’ll keep writing though. I’ll write and write until I die. Because I know that when I do die, someone will come into my cabin and say, “Well, what are these?”
They’ll pick up a manuscript and not be able to put it down. They’ll read through one, then ten, then twenty, until they’ve read all 500. Then they’ll say, “These must be published! I cannot keep these from the world. The world needs these well crafted stories that are filled with thought provoking ideas.”
Then all the work will be worth it. All the years of toil and snickers, of rejection and pain, all to finally be published after my death.
Usually they don’t like to publish modern dead people, because they can’t produce more works at that point. But I need not worry about that fate, because I wrote 500 while I could. (Plus the 20 extra hidden under the floorboards that they won’t find until ten years later. I’m planning ahead, see.)
No, I won’t be your average dead writer. I will be extra delusional! I will be unsurpassed in my unrealistic hopes. I will be… ok, maybe a little insane, but no burying bodies and hoarding animals. Promise.
It takes a writer, doesn’t it? To keep on doing your craft. To keep on believing in your craft. Working through the pain of rejection, torment and snickers from everyone who’s waiting for you to “Just give it up.”
There’s a feeling that you can’t possibly win in this business. It courses through me all the time. There’s another feeling too though. There’s the thrill of the story. Getting lost in that place and time. Having all your thoughts be the voices of those characters. You feel their struggle and their triumph. When you reach the end, it’s never the end, it always feels like it’s just the beginning. You look back at their stories and you are in love. You want to show them off to the world. You want the world to feel what you felt, and breathe in the lives on the page. You believe in them, because they didn’t pour out of you, but through you.
I witnessed an amazing thing. I chronicled it for the world to see. Maybe everyone won’t take the time to look, but, oh, if you do, you’ll love it too. So, call me delusional. I don’t mind. Call me a little insane, it goes along with having voices in your head. If I wasn’t a little off kilter then I couldn’t handle the subjective world I’m trying to become a part of. If I didn’t believe in the stories I’ve told, then neither would you.
You see, sometimes I’m a little lost in this world and I really want to get back to my other one. The one in my head. The one where something amazing is just about to happen.
Welcome to my worlds.
Won’t you come on in?