My days were going along as usual procrastinating about writing and filling my time doing everything but writing, other than those few short bursts of fluid creative thought that seemed to pour from my mind as though someone had taken me over. You know the feeling when after writing a few hundred awesome words that flew through your fingers onto the page, who wrote that?
For over a year my apartment was cleaner than ever before because I had to clean before I could write, right? Then I had to go to the gym because if I didn’t keep up my strength, how could I ever finish my book? And of course keeping up with friends, the myriad of unnoteworthy emails I received needed to be seen, and generally enjoying beach-life all served to distract me and provide excuses for not writing.
But the truth is, I didn’t believe in my heart that I could write well. Somehow I thought I had to write the novel of the century! Growing up I learned that if you can’t do a thing well, don’t do it at all. Somehow I heard, “If you can’t do a thing ‘perfectly,’ don’t do it at all!”
Despite friends and strangers who have heard me read excerpts from my book, telling me I write well and exhorting me to complete it, I continued to struggle. What if I did complete my book? What then? I knew nothing of how to publish a book, where to get it printed, who would do the cover, or how to market it. A few good friends who are accomplished authors promised to help with those things but the job seemed monumental.
Somehow I think I am not alone in this dilemma. I hear many who say they would like to write a book–far more than those who actually do. Perhaps they struggle like I did with the daunting task of seeing the work through from beginning to end. To those who feel as I did, I say, do it anyway! The help is out there! If you can write a book, you can learn to do the rest. And honestly, if I can do it, almost anyone can.
Having experienced the labor of love seeing our book, Saving Libbie the Lobster, through to it’s completion and beyond, has taught me much. I see once again in my life that I am my own worst enemy. I alone will stop myself from fulfilling my highest hopes. So back to my novel I shall go. I will see it through to the end and beyond.