Monday, June 11, 2007

Writing Realities

So I got the writing bug about 2 1/2 years ago. I hadn't done any creative writing for years, but I had started penning a few short stories a few months prior. Then I got the brilliant idea that I could write a novel! I started with a simple mental picture/sequence, and the story unfolded itself pretty quickly from there.

I enjoyed creative writing in school, but I am not the type to just jump into something. I started looking into books and searched the internet for writing sites. Soon I had found Faith in Fiction and that became my portal into a lot of other contacts about writing (for instance, with all the writers there starting blogs, I finally decided to check this world out).

Still, when I started I thought that I could have a serviceable book done in a year at the most. Heh, heh, heh. Silly n00b.

Over the weekend I managed to finish chapter six. All told, I have about 12-15,000 words and 26-28 pages down on my WIP (work in progress for the uninitiated). My goal is around 80-90,000 words. I guess I'm about around 1/6th there.

In 2 1/2 years I have spent reading and studying the craft of writing. I've done a lot of reading in that time. I may not be an expert, but I think I have a better understanding of what it takes to write a good book. Also, I have gained an appreciation of the timeframe it can take to become published.

Thankfully I'm not alone in starting this endeavor thinking it isn't all that big a deal. I hear many others say that they didn't realize how long it can take to get published. I started checking out Randy Ingermanson's blog at Advanced Fiction Writing, and he has shared the time frame it took him to get published.

10 years.

He then shares about a friend who took 26 years to get published. I don't know about you, but I admire that persistence. Brandilyn Collins has shared about her 7 year (approx) journey to publishing fiction as well, and there are many other stories like that. I had come to the conclusion quite a while ago that this wouldn't be a quick, wham-bam process. Especially since I deal with working full-time, busy kids, keeping up with my loving wife, and ministry at my local church. Oh, and blogging!

Anymore any progress is a good thing. Maybe if I share it here, I'll have accountability and encouragement. I know Matt's updates at Burning Hearts Revolution has inspired me to get BOC (butt in chair). I can't seem to let this bug go, so I pray for grace to keep at this project. Keeps me off the streets I suppose (except the time I test-drove a mo-ped just to understand a tiny plot point of a character...)

Randy has more advice for the aspiring writer - he gives you permission to be bad. Guess you'll have to read that one for yourself to get it!


  1. That's good stuff man. I think it took me about 5 years to publish my first poem. It really is a persistence game. There is a poet (whose name escapes me) published her first book in her 80's.

  2. All I can say is, I definitely understand the struggle to find the time to write when you're balancing that with career, wife, kids, etc. I don't know how people do it.