You can write about whatever you want, so don’t let the fears surrounding your current project scare you.
^^ I saved that as a draft so I wouldn’t forget what I wanted to write about with this post, as when I thought of it, I didn’t have time to actually write it, but didn’t want to forget it, either (this happens a lot). Usually, I erase the line that tells me what the post is going to be about and try to come up with something more clever to start off with, but I think that one can stay there and it’ll be just fine.
I’m roughly two chapters away from finishing the first draft of my fourth novel. Needless to say, I’m quite excited about that, but this novel–like my previous ones–has been a whirlwind emotionally. I have gone from thinking it is the brilliant piece of literature that is going to get me on the map to thinking I might as well sign a contract to work a desk job for the rest of my life, because this book isn’t even worth the time I have spent writing it (thankfully, I love this book too much to give up on it). I’ve been close to finishing it for a little over two weeks, now. Yet each time I sit down to write, I “only” write a couple thousand words. I haven’t cranked out the ending in one sitting, like I’ve done previously. And I’ve caught myself browsing the web instead of writing to put off writing the next scene, which I hate doing, especially as my writing time becomes more sacred. So I’m scared to finish this book. And that’s fine, because I’m ignoring those fears and keep writing anyway, despite that those fears are causing me to unconsciously take a little longer to finish this book.
During one of those let’s-browse-the-internet-instead-of-writing-even-though-we’re-supposed-to-be-writing moments, I was glancing through Pinterest. I follow a lot of really talented artists who post their work originally on DeviantArt and love looking through their character designs and fantasy art. And I stumbled upon one that was a portrait of a woman disheveled, before or after a battle, and I remember thinking offhandedly, “I wonder what her story is like. I wish I could write about her.” And then I moved on, browsing through the drastic amount of Dragon Age pins that take up most of my feed. I didn’t think too much of it. I didn’t even repin that pin that made me curious as to the woman’s story, sadly to say. It wasn’t until later when the realization hit me.
I don’t have to “wish” to write about anything. I can write about anything and everything. It’s just a matter of writing it.
I know that seems obvious, but at this moment in time, it was a very needed reminder. Three (almost four now) books under my belt and still publishing seems like such a foreign concept to me. The demons of doubt appear more and more frequently (luckily, they are going to be great inspiration for my next series). My first trilogy I love like a parent loves their child. This book I’m working on now holds a special place in my heart because it is so far out of my comfort zone, yet I’m still going after it anyway. All of these stories, I want told. But in the end, if they aren’t told, that is totally okay. Because I can write more. I can fall in love with more characters, continue to stretch my creativity to new worlds, constantly challenge myself to grow and become a better storyteller, all while living life and finding inspiration from anything I’m willing to notice.
That’s the beauty of being a writer. If you’re stubborn enough–and if you know me, one of my main qualities is my stubbornness–and you’re willing to put in the work, the stories will come to you. The avenues you can travel down are endless. So that woman I barely noticed, yet was still curious enough to want to know her story? I can find that out. I can write that down. No matter how many stories I fall in love with and tell, yet don’t get published for the greater public to discover…that number doesn’t matter, because I can always find more. Being a writer doesn’t have to end. The chances of finding a story that the world loves as much as I personally do is endless. I’m not sure how many professions allow someone that much freedom and that many chances, but I’m very thankful writing does. And I’m very excited to see what stories unveil themselves to me as I continue this journey.
Until then, I have a book to finish.