Thursday, April 16, 2015

A to Z Challenge: N is for...NOW!

 N is for now…!

I want a starter’s pistol to go off every time I need to act on something NOW!

No false starts, no procrastination—pure preparation, finding your spot at the starter’s line, then the anticipation of the shot that announces, “There’s no turning back.”

“On your mark, get set, GO!”

 And I go!

Four years ago I got excited about the race to get my novel written and published. But I kept leaping to the sound of false pistols. I had this amazing idea with no skills as a novelist to write.

My first draft was too short and full of every mistake a writer could make. I sent it to an editor and she gently told me to learn the craft…ouch! But not really, because I knew she was right.

I read, studied, took online courses, went to workshops, wrote, re-wrote, sweated, slaved, felt inspiration, felt like giving up—everything. The next year rolled around and I thought I had it—another false start. For the life of me, I could not see the POV issues I had. I kept writing in third person omniscient! It was like the sea glass on the beach—I couldn’t see my mistakes until someone pointed them out. ARGH!

But I kept at it and got better. More study, more reading, more writing, more ideas, more editing, more critiques. I seemed to get past some major problems—plot structure, POV, but I still had issues with showing vs. telling. And my main characters were all the wrong ages. The false start sent me back to the locker room again for a major overhaul.

So, last year I worked my fingers to the bone. I submitted a few chapters to one critique group and I got a request from another group to read through the overhaul—for the first time I heard comments like, “You’ve learned a lot. You’re on the right track. I couldn’t put it down.”

Wow. Were they telling me I was ready to stand at the starter’s line? Will I hear the right starter’s pistol go off? I’ve been mistaken in the past, I didn’t want another false start.

 Time will tell. But for the first time in four years, I feel like the time is now—! Really now. This year. I’ve learned to wait for the starter’s pistol—the right one—and the wait has made all the difference.

But when it goes off, there’s no turning back! This book will be published!


  1. I imagine myself a writer and am so far away. I loved this post and you inspired me.

    #AtoZChallenge Participant 1669.Creative Play Without Limits

    1. Thanks! We all need to encourage each other. Endure to the end!

  2. False starts can be painful, but it's wonderful that you're so positive. Your time is NOW!

    Good luck with the A to Z Challenge!
    A to Z Co-Host S. L. Hennessy

    1. Thanks! I've been negative, but that's no fun. Being positive is so much better!


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