Being a writer is lonely business. Face-to-face contact with your public is limited, support is sometimes difficult to find, and understanding from someone other than your critique group (or this wonderful collection here at IWSG) is nigh on impossible. Praise for what we do is scooped up like nuggets in a gold rush, with everyone scrambling for those same few precious glittery bits. But when we find them, they’re worth their weight. Those are the words that keep us going while sequestered in our isolated keyboard cave.
This month’s question posed by IWSG is about encouragement: “What was the best thing someone has ever said about your writing?”
I’ve been fortunate to work with some fantastic people within the publishing industry, but one stands out as a rock. I “met” Micki Nuding when she was the assistant to dynamo Ellen Edwards at Avon Books when I was writing historicals as Rosalyn West, but we didn’t have a face-to-face until an industry party in New York years later where I discovered she was an editor at Pocket/Simon & Schuster and casually pitched her a proposal for a dark shape-shifter series. Her response, “Send it.” We worked together on eight books in my By Moonlight series. She was a relentless cheerleader, a shrewd and insightful editor, and when I recently learned she’d retired, I sent her an e-mail thanking her for her support and for teaching me so much about self-editing. Her reply is tacked on my bulletin board beside my laptop for those days when I wonder why I get up at 4:30 a.m.:
“I also consider you one of the best writers I’ve ever worked with; your gift for storytelling is supreme, your versatility is impressive, and your heroes are beyond hot.”
This, from someone I respect so highly! So when I struggle, I remember her faith in me. And this morning at 4:30, facing revisions, I glanced at that note, and I got right to work, hoping to live up to those words.
Who keeps you going?
Purpose: To share and encourage. Writers can express doubts and concerns without fear of appearing foolish or weak. Those who have been through the fire can offer assistance and guidance. It’s a safe haven for insecure writers of all kinds!
Posting: The first Wednesday of every month is officially Insecure Writer’s Support Group day. Post your thoughts on your own blog. Talk about your doubts and the fears you have conquered. Discuss your struggles and triumphs. Offer a word of encouragement for others who are struggling. Visit others in the group and connect with your fellow writer - aim for a dozen new people each time.
Let’s rock the neurotic writing world!
Twitter hashtag is #IWSG