Pronunciation Guide

Sunday, March 30, 2014

Of discouragement, massive sighs, and fear

I should be writing right now.
I haven’t hit par once throughout MarNo. I’m still within a few thousand words, but it’s been a rough month writing-wise.

I’m just feeling discouraged.
I am questioning myself hugely.
Wondering why I can’t just write a fun romance novel, or adventure novel, or…you know…something NOT about trafficking and rape and brutality and war.

Wondering if I’m doing the right thing in not pursuing publishing until I finish the tetralogy.

Wondering if I am avoiding publishing more out of fear rather than a desire to finish all four books first.

…I’ve wondered that for years, actually. If I am honest.

Because every time I say why I’m waiting to publish, something in me flinches. Whispers that it’s an excuse.

Back when I wrote my elf story book one (finished in April 2007), I made up some history for it. As I began writing elf book two, more of the history came out – and I realized that my previous timeline was way off. It was a plot hole – and I HATE plot holes.

I fixed it in my history documents and changed what needed to be changed in book one.

…But if book one had been published…I wouldn’t have been able to change it.

I decided that it would be better to finish the entire trilogy before trying to publish. That way, if anything else had to change, I could tweak all three books accordingly – and eliminate all plot holes and inconsistencies.

It felt reasonable.
Smart somehow – a way to avoid that dreaded pitfall that I so often see readers complain about.

I carried that mindset into this tetralogy.
Now I am questioning if that is even wise at all.

Yes, I am writing the tetralogy as one big story, because that is what it is in my head. But book one is still finished. Edits are coming along. Beta readers are giving feedback. And book two will still be finished before book three is. And three before four.

I could publish book one while still working on the others.

Why does this strike me with such terror?

I’m not talking fear of rejection here. I know I will be rejected, and it will hurt because I want everyone to love what I write and think it’s awesome and powerful. But it’s whatever. I’m sure that somewhere out there, I could find SOMEONE who would want to publish my story. And if not, I’ll hire an editor and do it myself. (Side note: I totally wrote “hire and editor”. …Case in point. Haha!)

No, this is fear of the unknown.
Fear of going down the wrong path.
…Fear of making a mistake.

(…Wait, so I’m exactly the same person with my writing that I am every other moment of my life? Who knew?)

I just want to do what God wants.
I just want to do what’s right for me. Because I am me, not anyone else. And I can’t pretend otherwise.

This is the story I’ve been given.
It’s about human-trafficking, rape, slavery, hatred, forgiveness, redemption, restoration, purpose, and hope.

It just is.

It’s the journey of a girl from victim to victor; of a man from persecutor to champion. (See what I did there? Probably not…but you will get it eventually.)

How their journey is going to look by the time it is done, I have no clue. Not anymore.

But I think it might be time to stop lingering on the shore.
Time to walk upon the waters, wherever he would call me.
Time to step into the great unknown, where feet may fail.
…Maybe my feet need to fail – so that my faith can become a faith that doesn’t.