So little of the work surrounding a novel is the actual process of writing. What I mean to say, is that writing is easy, fun. Editing is a bit trying at times (especially when you’re editing the whole book in just a few days!) but it is everything thereafter that is difficult. Querying agents, waiting (oh, the waiting!), considering the contract, and all the facets of marketing are more time-consuming and tiresome than writing could ever be. But that is not the point.
I set out to write a book that I was proud of. I didn’t care if it was ever published because – first of all – I wanted to create something that honored that people that it was about, that showed my friends and family that I love them (even if it was just borrowing their name or demeanor for a character). So after this process, my confidence in my work has gone up (after all, it was good enough to get publisher). People are telling me that they can’t put it down and that means so very much to me. But am I confident enough to take the criticism that comes with any degree of success? And do others respect me enough to tell me the truth? I’m starting to believe so…
Last night, I was conversing with Honey (my book is about a fictionalized version of her 20-something self from 1939-1945) and she told me that she had started to read the book. Her response was:
“It’s actually well-written! It’s like you’re a real writer or something!” I think that was the best compliment I’ll ever receive from her, and I am grateful for it (though I did laugh to myself a little when she said it).