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Monday, February 25, 2013

I've been waiting for this for 15 years

My week at Unicorn Bell happens to fall on a very special week, the week leading up to the release of my debut novel! So I hope you will indulge me with some posts that are more introspective than my usual fare. I'll be discussing my publishing journey up to now and some of my goals (and fears) for the future.

I've wanted to be an author for as long as I can remember. This goal faded in and out of focus over the years, but it's always returned. In high school my creative writing teacher pulled me aside and basically said, "You know, you're actually good at this." That stuck with me. It shows how even simple encouragement can make a huge difference for a teen. I bet the whole interaction lasted a minute or two, but I really took it to heart.

I started writing my first novel when I was fifteen-years-old. I wrote it by hand in a notebook. Then I transferred it to the family computer and saved it to a floppy disk. I was so nervous about anyone else reading it, I wouldn't even save it to the hard drive. Sadly, the floppy disk became degraded and I lost all of the work. I still had it in my notebook but I was so discouraged that I had lost all of my work typing it and revising, that I put it aside indefinitely.

The novel was probably too short and very bad, so maybe that disk degraded for a reason. :) I'm sort of glad that self-publishing wasn't a big thing when I was young. I was a stubborn little thing (still am) and probably would have wanted to publish right then and there. It's good that I waited until I had completed my fifteen year trial of rewrites and rejections. All that suffering and waiting made me a better writer, and probably a better person.

My fifteen-year-old self would be very annoyed that it took me fifteen years to realize her dream, but that finish line looks even sweeter after a marathon.

Tomorrow, I'll talk about my attempt at writing a novel in college.

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The Charge


E.J. Wesley said...

Way to go Sharon! A well-deserved victory lap. :-)

angie said...

What exciting news :) I am excited to read more of your story!

Katie Teller said...

I love that teacher's comment. It's amazing how one small thing like that can stick with you. Only a few days left!

Liza said...

Congratulations! Enjoy every minute!

Sharon Bayliss said...

Thank you all! <3