I’ve been Miss Avoid-ee for, well, a very long time. I’ve been avoiding posting, avoiding life… just plain avoiding. I’m going to be posting a blurb about a nifty award I got — around the time that I started my avoiding phase — but right now I’m going to be catching you up with my life.
I went to a writers’ group. Yup. With writers. Whodda thunk? It was an all women group that I kind of found myself plopped into by my mother. I’ll be honest and say that I wasn’t too thrilled at first. That was thanks to the dear ol’ mom I mentioned before. She essentially planned it for me like someone signs up their four year old up for day camp during the summer.
“She needs this,” she said, while I was sitting there, rather unmotivated to defend myself because I was just getting over a cold. The same night that this happened, she gave me a lecture on being prepared with answers to people’s questions for me.
That requires some back story. We were at an event: large room filled with chatting people, who also happened to be eating around tables crowded close together. I was asked a question by someone two seats down, and it took me a good moment to get the answer out to them. My brain was addled, okay?! The constant drone around me, cold medicine still lurking in my bloodstream and the fact that I’d just gone to take a bite of pie all played into that mess of a moment.
But, no, my mom has to only remember the times when I’m socially awkward and stumbling over my own feet. She ignored the fact that I had a rather good conversation with the girl right next to me, who I didn’t know at all.
Now, we were talking about the writing group. It was like coming up for air. I got to talk, face to face, about writing with people who understood writing. No one was in awe or telling me that they bet they’d see my novels out their some time soon. No one asked me what the “trick” to writing was, or tried to give me an idea for a book.
It was a relief, and the most important thing was that everyone there understood that it’s not always that easy to write. It’s sometimes difficult to get an idea out of your head when it doesn’t want to be out yet. Last month I felt like when I told people my story was coming slowly, they thought I was just trying to put the square block through the circle when, OBVIOUSLY, it should go in the square hole.
Oh, yes, obviously. I should have already written my entire story according to the same people who are constantly asking me writing questions that usually have an obvious answer to me. And, yes, I’m starting to sound like an arrogant idiot. I’ll leave you with this quote then, from an author I’ve grown fond of in the past year.
I had a roommate that said that you couldn’t tell that Stephen King could write all the terrifying and creepy things that he does just by looking at him. Though I never said anything, I had always been able to tell by looking at his eyes. I did, however, remind her that I — a quiet, unassuming person who many referred to as “nice” and “sweet” — love Halloween, grin excitedly at fear farms, and am willing to write a story that ends with a middle school boy being eaten by a monster. Perhaps this is a like-knows-like situation?
“Writing isn’t about making money, getting famous, getting dates, getting laid, or making friends. In the end, it’s about enriching the lives of those who will read your work, and enriching your own life, as well. It’s about getting up, getting well, and getting over. Getting happy, okay? Getting happy.” -Stephen King