When I started writing, I had no clue what I was doing. None. I just did it. I was proud of every step I took. I couldn’t believe it when I finished writing an entire book. So much of writing that first book was to see if I could actually do it. I was so proud of myself. And even though none of the motivation to finish had been for publication, I naturally wanted to know “What’s next?” I had this story I was proud of and I wanted to know what I had to do to get it out there for other people to read.
So began this long long journey to publication. It has taken many twists and turns and dead stops, wondering where the heck to go next, but I’m finally in the place I have wanted to be in for a long time.
I consider these years–and yes, it’s been a good 4-5 years since I finished that first manuscript–as my education in publication. I had a different career when I started writing, but soon learned it just was not my passion anymore. So I gave it up to pursue a writing career. And with anything, it takes time to learn the rules, learn the business, figure out what works and what doesn’t, observe, network, trial and error. These years were a whole lot like going to college. I worked my butt off, but not for grades. Every step I took taught me so much. As did the rejections and heartbreak. It all was part of the learning process. Every rejection taught me something and made me want to work harder.
It’s been a long few years, working toward my goal, and hopefully I’m at the cusp of reaching it. Instead of earning a degree from a fancy school, I’ve earned my spot in the big leagues. And just like college, a fancy degree in the real world often means only as much as the paper it’s printed on. What I’ve earned will only continue to flourish if I continue to work hard.