How do you know if you are a rich writer?
If we are rich writers, we use words like Paula Deen uses butter and cream. We liberally pour out our ideas and our vision into our paragraphs and prose. We add in sweetness and flavor and texture who we are and what we care about in every book. We sculpt our words together like sugary icing roses along a cake and we present our final, finished projects as grand feasts for the world, allowing our readers to savor each morsel and each portion. If we are rich writers, the solitary act of creating is a full and satisfying one.
But I’d like to suggest that more satisfaction that comes when we are connected to writer friends who are making their own sweet compositions.
You are, indeed, rich, if you have written books by the dozens, won awards, and sold many copies.
But you are richer still if you have close friends who coached you along the way.
Every success, every victory, every instance of #AuthorHappiness is just one tiny blip on this long writing journey, that is, quite honestly, a lonely one, but is magnified when it is shared. And the sad, dark times are so much easier with their comfort.
The rejection letters will come. Let those around us buy us a drink.
The 1 star reviews will trickle in. Let those around us say, “They just don’t get your brilliance.”
The doors will close. The publishing house will go under. The disappointments are a given if we choose writer as our identity.
Within a group of writers, you have mentors and protegies, you have advice and warnings, you celebrations and sorrows. You can squeeze each others’ hands and say, “it is scary,” but you can do it. Or, “you are good, hang in there” or “this happened to me once!”
Writers, as tempting as it is to wrap yourself up in a solitary, lonely world with just your characters and your computer as your companions, please don’t neglect the importance of community. Reach out to other writers. We need you too.
How do you find other writers? There are tons of ways! But the easiest is to join my group 10 Minute Novelists on Facebook.
Your writing life will be all the richer for it.