Thursday, November 20, 2014

Optimism (Survivng NaNoWriMo #4)

Hello all! You might have noticed that I have hit the 50k goal for NaNoWriMo, which makes me very happy. Expect a celebratory post at the end of the month/whenever I actually finish this rough draft. 50k and going strong for maybe 5k more!

Anyway, tonight I'm feeling a bit down and I find the best thing to do when I'm a little sad is to encourage other people. There's nothing better. :)

Some Much Needed Positivity

I am an optimist. Truly. I believe in hoping for the best, and I am something of an idealist. However, sometimes I get burnt out. For instance, a few days ago I sat across the table from my mom at a local Pizza Hut and proposed that instead of going to college I would like to buy an airstream and move out into the middle of the woods with nothing but a cat, a laptop, some clothes, and some food. My optimism failed a little there, overwhelmed by the options and obstacles that seem so insurmountable.

I do the same with my writing. I am a person who easily will give up on things, less so now than I used to be, but still prone to lapse back into the "I'm done" mindset. Some days, this .gif sums up my life.
As I have said before, at heart, I am Bilbo Baggins.

I digress. A few days ago I stumbled upon some lovely Pinterest posts tagged "Writer Positivity". These little gems are what they advertise themselves as: little pieces of sunshine for struggling writers. They truly brightened my day, and inspired me. I want to pass a little bit of that inspiration on to you.

One day you're going to be someone's favorite author.
When they're listing off people who have made a difference in their life, you'll be one of the first names to come up.
Someone out there will list you as their inspiration.
Someone out there will clutch your book as close to their heart as they can. Someone will hold it tight and never let it go because you know what?
They know now that someone understands them.
They open those pages and they realize that they are not alone. They lose themselves in your story because that's the one place they feel they are found. 
Some of them will rave to others about your book, saying "You simply have to read this book!"
Some of them will say nothing at all, but your book will always sit on their nightstand, waiting for them if they ever can't sleep at night because they feel unloved.
People will shed tears over your book. People will go on Tumblr and type angry rants because they love your book so much.
Someone will squeal just thinking about the next book you're going to write.

One day someone is going to email you, telling you just what that book you wrote means to them.
"You changed my life."
"You inspired me to write."
"You gave me hope."
You'll email back, unable to believe that your story, the story you nearly gave up on, could touch someone's heart so deeply.
When they see your name in the email inbox, their hands will begin to shake with excitement.
Because you will mean so much to that person.

One day you'll be signing books. 
You'll be tired and your hand will hurt from gripping a pen. Maybe you'll be on your phone checking the weather. Maybe you'll be about to go for lunch.
Someone will walk up to your table, holding your book and smiling at the ground.
They'll nod in reply, trying to speak but unable. They may stammer something about how much they love your book.
"Who's your favorite character?" you'll ask.
They'll answer, still barely able to speak because you have become such a legend to them.
You'll shake your head, remembering the manuscript that no publisher would accept.

Someone will always carry your story in their heart.
Maybe it's just one line.
It will stick with them and they will keep it. They will hold it. They will carry it always.
They will share it with others.
Your story will change lives.
Your story matters.
Your story will shake someone's world.

However, this will only happen if you write it.
And you can.
You can write it. You can finish it. You can revise it and you can make it something to be proud of.

You can change someone's life with your story.
So tell it.

Don't worry, it's a happy tear.