Final stop, Desperation Station!
Let's face it, it's not a good place to be. Desperation gives off a certain whiff and makes you behave a certain way. It affects everything that you do and colours your life in shades of panic and anguish. No one wants to visit you there and there's nothing to do but obsess and worry in a pit of wretchedness and self pity.
I never thought I'd end up here. Not really. Maybe, it was possible I'd get off at this stop after many years of trying to get published but somehow, I seem to have got off at this stop far too early.
I'm not sure why. When I first began I had no delusions, in fact I never thought I'd get anywhere at all but my first book did surprisingly well, with agents requesting it and reading it and liking it and almost taking it on. When it eventually failed to find a home it seemed to spark off something of a panic.
I needed an agent.
I needed a book deal.
And I needed them now!
Convinced that my second novel would be the one I worked like a dervish trying to finish it but despite spending a long time revising and editing I failed to address one of the key problems. It was a problem I'd been aware of all along but I thought I could maybe ignore it and no one would notice...
And the second book is still sitting on my laptop, homeless and unloved.
But, I went away and started my third book and discovered something I'd forgotten.
The love of creation.
The pure joy of writing.
The sheer pleasure of words.
The most interesting thing about writing the third book however is that the sense of desperation has left me. I'm writing for me in my own time and in my own way. I'm not trying to write for the market or to please anyone else and it's remarkably freeing.
I'd still like an agent and a publisher of course, but I don't NEED one. I have no idea if this project has that special ingredient that will make someone want to publish it and that's okay.
I made it and it's mine and I love it. Creating every day makes me happy.
That is what I'm going to focus on now.
I will still go to events and workshops. I will read and work and do my best to improve but I'm going to do that for me, I want the satisfaction of knowing I'm improving and growing as a writer. I want to have writing in my life but I don't NEED publication to make me happy and I refuse to let it define me. Published or unpublished I am a writer because I write. That is the lesson I've learned.
So I'm leaving Desperation Station. I'm going somewhere new, somewhere that I can relax and create and enjoy my life. Hopefully others will come and visit me there...everyone's welcome!