I had a different post written for today, but then decided the topic wasn’t really what was on my mind. What I really want to talk about is passion. Actually, I want to talk about two related passions. The first is the passion for writing. Most of you who read this blog share that one. Some of you participated in my recent survey. One of the questions was whether you feel you were born to write. Some of you said yes. My answer was no.
I’ve always made up stories to amuse myself, but I didn’t feel a compulsion to write many of them down until ten years ago. I wasn’t sure what changed. I was older and had more life experience? My children were grown and I had more free time? I had cycled out of one obsession and needed a new one? Whatever the cause, suddenly I felt a compulsion to write. The more I wrote, the more passionate I became about writing.
But I don’t think the world needs to read my stories. I don’t believe any of my books will ever be considered great literature. I won’t die if I can’t write; I’ll just go back to keeping the stories in my head.
For nine years, even though I loved writing and believed I was good at it, I never sought publication. Now, in the last year, I’ve developed the passion for publication. I want to be published. I really want to be published. Not for money, though of course a little monetary profit would be a definite plus, but I’ve researched enough to know that as a new author, I can expect to make very little money.
What I want … what I need is validation. Here’s the problem: I feel foolish admitting that.
Why should I need validation from the powers that be? I’ve spent my whole as a very private person. In that life, I’m loved and respected. I’m secure in that life. So why open myself up to public judgment? I joke about it, but I have no illusions that I’m writing the next BIG novel. My name will not become a “household word.” Yet, I push forward. This passion mystifies me, yet I can’t deny it.
Do you have the publication passion? Do you know why?
26 thoughts on “Publication Passion”
I guess I see publication as a means to an end. I watched a television special about J.K. Rowling and it inspired me so much to see kids reading her massive, two-inch-thick book (…Deathly Hallows). It hit me hard — there are probably countless people who learned to read because such an amazing story emerged from her brain, and she took the time to write it and make it exceptional. If one person learns to read from my book, that would be great. If one person learns to love to read from my book, that’s great, too. If one person’s life and thoughts and feelings are shaped in any way by something I write, that would be incredible. I see publication as one means to that end. Guess I’d better finish the book, first, though. 😉
That’s a lovely and exciting way to think about it, Kayla. I’m thinking now, how wonderful and strange it would be to know someone halfway around the world could open my book and be transported into a world I created for a while. Stephen King, in his book On Writing, calls this telepathy. A writer “sends out” an image, a bit of dialogue, an emotion, and the reader sees, hears, and feels it. I’ts magic.
I just finished reading Stephen King’s book – it was great! I liked that example you mentioned, too. (Random sidenote – are you a Lost fan? There are bunnies with 8s on their backs in a few scenes of that show, and Stephen King’s example – using the bunnies – sent my brain into a theorizing tizzy.)
Yes, I’m a serious LOST fan. I had read On Writing before, but the part with the #8 bunnies did not stick with me, so when they used that on LOST, I didn’t catch it. But when I reread that part of the book this week, I too started theorizing. I know the creators of the show are King fans and he’s a fan of the show. To be honest, I’ve wondered if King had something to do with the big leap in story quality these last two seasons. I can’t wait to see how they wrap it up this last season.