Monday, September 14, 2015

4 Realizations of a Writer

 This week I begin to write what ultimately may be the LAST chapter.

That's some scary #$%!
 
It feels like chasing someone and as they're getting further away I yell, "But wait! I have SO much more to say! Please don't go! Please don't leave me!!!!"
Then they call the cops and I'm in jail writing a post for everyone to send bail money. Not my best moment, but I really don't want it to end!
 
I want to keep saying more and more, but that's not how books work. Unless you're Janet Evanovich and in total denial that Ranger or Joe will settle down with Stephanie (people, we're on book 21...it's safe to say she'll be single forever).
 
As I near the end of my MS, I've realized a few things about being a writer that I wanted to share.

1. WE'RE ALL STUDENTS
I was such an annoying hemorrhoid when I dug back into writing (pun intended). But, now I see I only thought I was annoying because someone made me FEEL like I was annoying. Look, I didn't know how to do everything. I was vulnerable, unsure, and anxious. I was a newbie at this stuff! Gimme a break! No one learns unless someone teaches them, and we ALL could be taught something new. If someone comes to you and you're like holy hell shut up, remember what it felt like when you first started.

2. WRITERS UNDERSTAND WRITERS
Ever profess something writerly to a non-writerly person and you feel like either their engaged to be nice, or engaged because mentally they're totally somewhere else? You're not alone! And to continue not feeling alone, stay buds with your writing buds. If you don't foster some of those little relationships, in some form or another, slowly your support isn't as strong and you start to feel totally out of the loop. Build stronger support bras! I mean...bonds...James Bond. Sorry. I got off track. But you understand because you're a writer, right?

3. DON'T FEEL STUPID FOR ASKING QUESTIONS
Again, this goes back to my newbie days where you don't feel stupid for asking till someone makes you feel stupid for asking. But you're not stupid for asking! So stop feeling that way! I'm still messaging my writer buds for information and how-to's. So what? They're my personal Google minus crazy images and pop-up ads. Plus, I get emojis. :D I'm not a scholar, and neither are any of us, really, but ya'll are a trust fund baby of knowledge wealth..and I just turned 18 (like many, many years ago), so anty up!

4. REMEMBER YOUR ROOTS
I've seen it before where a writer "changes their colors" because of various reasons. Some it's the book deals, the writer click they're now in, or the continuous rejections. In my book, I hand force (because you know, I'm the writer here) my MC to say "who was I before this all happened"? So I must ask, before being a writer, who were you? See if you've let things go to your head either because of your writing success (snob) or writing failures (pessimist). And since you write you're OWN story in life, make sure you're not doing anything in there for the wrong reason to others, and especially to yourself.


When you close down your computer or laptop, and put
down your cellphones, remember there's still you to take care of.
And me...because I'm in jail, remember?
 
In a nutshell:
Ask stupid questions about your own roots from understanding writers since they're students, too.
Totally makes sense...

 

31 comments:

Natalie Aguirre said...

Congrats on finishing your manuscript. And we always have questions--even when we sign an agent and publishing contract. It's great how supportive the writing community is.

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Hi Tammy - yes well done on finishing and getting past that final hurdle ... now the steady progress to the ultimate finishing line. We need to ask questions ... so much to learn and absorb, and so many different approaches ... cheers Hilary

M.J. Fifield said...

Hooray for reaching that last chapter. I've been trying to get to that point for a while now, so I applaud you for getting there.

And getting off track? I never do that. I don't know what you're——Squirrel!

Happy writing!

JoJo said...

Those could also be applied to artists and crafters like me.

Christine Rains said...

Yay! You're almost done! That's awesome. I sometimes feel silly asking questions, but I ask them anyway. The minions look at me just like that.

L. Diane Wolfe said...

If you don't ask the stupid questions you'll just make stupid mistakes.

We're both so close - I am about three-four pages from finishing mine.

Pat Hatt said...

I still have 9 chapters left in my latest one. Have those done in a week or so. Change colors? Maybe they got out of the house and got a tan lol

Susan Gourley/Kelley said...

It does make sense although as usual you put your own hilarious spin on it. I've been lucky to have writer buds I can always go to with questions.

Susan Says

Chrys Fey said...

I loved the Stephanie Plum reference. I like those books but the fact that she's STILL flip-flopping between the two men is annoying.

We are all constantly learning about writing. I learn something new just about every week. lol And I enjoy that I do.

Jay Noel said...

Congrats on closing in on finishing your manuscript. It ain't easy, but you're almost there.

And don't worry, all my success won't get to my head. (Hardy har har)

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Success will never go to my head.
Congratulations on nearing the end.

Bish Denham said...

Enjoy the feeling of finishing your book! Bask in the afterglow of all that blood, sweat, and tears. Set it aside for a few weeks, a month, maybe even more. THEN go back and read it, start to finish, see how it reads. THEN, as they say, the REAL work begins.

Breathe. Have fun!

SA Larsenッ said...

Congrats on writing that last chapter! It's such a great feeling, each and every time. It's so comforting to know that other writers just 'get' you, understand what this or that writing experience feels like without having to explain.

Melissa said...

By the time I write the last chapter, I'm like THANK GAWD! LOL

I've always had a soft spot for newbies and underdogs. :)

Elephant's Child said...

Congratulations on approaching the finishing line.
And there are no stupid questions. Well not many.

Murees Dupé said...

Congratulations! Definitely exciting times. Those are such great points. I remember feeling like such a newbie and in truth, at times I still feel like I'm learning about writing. Hopefully, being published won't change me. There is definitely no such thing as dumb questions. Wishing you the best with the rest of your project.

Southpaw HR Sinclair said...

Cheers on writing up that last chapter!

Susan Kane said...

You have crossed the finish line! Well, don't know if that is a complete finish line...

Stephen Tremp said...

Tammy, that's a great feeling. Once a book is finished with the edits and all I find this a bittersweet feeling, like a child who has grown and is leaving the house.

Neurotic Workaholic said...

Congratulations and good luck on the last chapter, especially because it's difficult even to get half that far (believe me, I know). Maybe it doesn't have to be the last chapter, though? I mean, maybe you could write a sequel or even a series?

Denise Covey said...

Congrats Tammy on jumping that hurdle! Well done you!

Donna K. Weaver said...

I'm glad fir the change/growth I've made the last the years. I'm editing a ms now I wrote 3 years ago. I can see things now I couldn't then.

Heather R. Holden said...

So exciting about that last chapter! And gosh, so true about there always being something new to learn. Writers are always growing, in that regard!

Yolanda Renee said...

Not going to linger, you've just inspired me to get back to work. Been reading and commenting, but should be writing!

BTW CONGRATULATIONS!

Bail money on the way! :)

Penny the Jack Russell dog and modest internet superstar! said...

Hey human, Tammy aka Tam-Bare,

Yes, well done and that's some scary SHIT! Be proud of your determination and resilience, my fine human friend.

Didn't know you were allowed a "cellphone" in your cell, Tammy! Then again, I think I know how you smuggled it in!

By the way, you're such a giggle a minute! Gosh and arf!

Pawsitive wishes and doggy kisses,

Penny xx

Yvonne Ventresca said...

Congrats on reaching the last chapter! It sounds like quite a journey. :)

Tammy Theriault said...

Everyone is giving amazing comments! Thanks so much. 😊

Crystal Collier said...

Chuckling along. I'm so stoked for you! THE last chapter... With my last completed book, I wanted to keep drafting, and now I'm wishing I had rather than switching to editing mode. If you're feeling the urge to keep at it, do it! Novellas make for awesome extras.

David P. King said...

Best feeling in the world to finish that MS, am I right? Time to celebrate! Always important to remember that we are always students. :)

cleemckenzie said...

Yay! You've done it and now you can rev up Harley and do a victory trip.

Forgetting the route we've taken as writers is really so wrong. It's the journey that makes for interesting stories, not the result. If we only had the end to write, we'd have super short books.

Loved the post.

Stephanie Faris said...

I've spent the past two days with two authors who write for the same publisher I do and it just feels so NICE to share stories with people who have been through the same things I have! But even when I first started out, I remember how nice it was to meet other writers for the first time and share stories and get insider tips.