Joywriting: Navigating the Writing Life
Thanks for dropping in to catch up! It's been a whirlwind year so far. CIRCUIT FAE: REKINDLED and CIRCUIT FAE 4: NEMESIS released, and we had a cover reveal for CIRCUIT FAE 5: EIDOLON, the epic conclusion, which releases on March 3, 2020.
In other news, in July, I went out on submission for my enemies-to-lovers teen lesbian knights book. Right now, it's in the hands of a dozen or so people who will decide whether or not it gets published.
Some days, I can barely wrap my head around it.
Here's the thing: the writing life is hard. It's like, you write a book and you send it out into the universe, and then, you have to let go of all your expectations of the outcome. It is just bizarre.
The only thing you have control over is the product you produce. Everything else--Will it get published? Will it get good/bad reviews? Will I get the chance to write another?--is all up in the air.
Once you write that book and send it off to your agent, you have literally no control over what happens.
After a few months of being out on sub, I realized a thing: this can really mess with your brain. As my agent sends me the comments from editors who have passed and adds more editors to our sub list, and as time creeps by, it's very easy to let doubt start nibbling away at your creativity, your confidence, your happiness.
You're told: work on something else. And you do. But that doubt...it clings... And if being on sub is a natural part of the writing life (and it is), the question becomes:
How do you navigate this?
A video I saw recently about choosing joy over happiness struck me soundly. Happiness, it purports, is a moving target. The second we attain it, we move the goalposts.
It's true. Take me: years ago, I would have killed to have books in print, to have people I didn't know reading them, loving them. Now, I do. But as grateful as I am (thank you, readers!!!), it's human nature to move the goalposts, to say, "I can top that."
It's time to stop that. At least for me. Instead, I'm choosing joy because "joy is in the making. It is always on approach. We take joy in the doing of the thing, in doing what we are put on this earth to do."
For me, it's writing. So I'm trying to take joy in the everyday writing, to make writing the reward rather than looking to some nebulous future and feeling like I can never grasp that elusive happiness.
That way, the writing becomes the goal, the focus, the thing that brings me joy. So far, it's working. I've noticed myself being more motivated and geared up to write each day.
I'm tracking my progress on Twitter with the hashtag #joywriting.
Follow me on Twitter and tell me what you're excited to write!