I spent 25 years telling myself I didn't need to write. That the world was full of books. That others were much better writers than me.
After a great start, publishing my first 3 books, my experience in my first career hadn't ended well. I'd tied myself up in knots with my fourth book, wrote a crappy fifth book, and tried really hard with my sixth book and came Soooooooo Cloooooose.
My seventh book, I wrote exactly the way I wanted, and it didn't work.
My work habits sucked. I was totally hitting writer's block. I'd put too high expectations on myself.
Worse, I now had four manuscripts in a cedar chest that I knew were never going to see the light of day, and I didn't see much point in adding to them.
The publishing industry looked awful to me. It appeared to me that luck, timing, and who you knew mattered more than talent or potential talent. Fuck that.
So I convinced myself not to try.
The internet changed that. Just the idea that a book wouldn't end up in a cedar chest to be tossed out someday, but would actually be online, even if only a few people ever looked at it -- that was enough for me to try.
So I set out to write just one more book. Just to see if I could do it.
The first book was finished, but I mishandled completely. Oh, oh. Back to old habits. I wrote a second book that had possibilities, but it got clogged too. I wrote third book, just for fun, and that was better.
Then I woke up one day with a vampire book blooming in my head. I ignored the warning thoughts that "The world doesn't need another vampire book" and it poured out of me, and I haven't stopped since.
I had the idea of Donner Party and Werewolves, and it came out well. My first really mature book, I thought.
So the ease with which I write comes and goes. Sometimes it comes pouring out of me, sometimes it becomes a chore, but either way, I've tried to finish the books.
What I'm saying here is -- I'm amazed.
I just wanted to write one more book.
Apparently all those 25 years I was telling myself I didn't need to write, my creative subconscious was screaming to get out.
4 days ago