Saturday, 13 May 2017

On how to accept the rough with the smooth, and not just for yourself...

Someone said something the other day which rings oh so true.

To be an author is a bit like sailing. Sometimes you are on a calm and sunlit sea. Everything is lovely, life is good, the writing is praised and you're all set.

At other times it's a stormy sea. 

(source pinterest)

Highs and lows. You can go from the high (books selling, everyone loves you, you're really excited about something) to the lows within minutes. The lows...where your email doesn't arrive, you get a shitty review which doesn't say why someone hates your baby, you're told 'this is what you will do', and you're certain it's wrong.

Every author will eventually experience every type of sea. From the Sargasso where weeds can bog you down. To the Caribbean with long gorgeous days of positivity. To the hurricane tossed waves of self doubt and the Atlantic. And of course the short sharp passages of do this now, it's late... or whatever.

Writing is often a lonely business. We sit by ourselves in our office/study/bedroom or wherever, tapping away, full of self doubt, and never knowing if our hopefully well crafted tomes will be accepted, published or even read. Even when our baby is launched on the world there are pitfalls. Is it marketed correctly, have we missed something vital? Does it make sense? Did I get the year right for x or y.

This is where editors, come in. They are there to hone our work.

Sometimes we agree, sometimes we don't. Sometimes when you read a book, you wonder if anyone other than the author even glanced at it, it is so bad. Other times you want to high five whoever polished the story to such perfection.

And oh my goodness (carefully avoiding an expletive there), Sometimes you need a private place to let off steam. To show how excited/happy/fed up/ perplexed or f-ing mad you are. 

Somewhere the group (yes lets be honest, usually fellow authors, because after all who else understands how one tiny 'this isn't right but', 'do it my way or else', 'your title sucks', can affect you) can tell you to stop being a diva/pull your big girl panties up/build a bridge and get over it. 

Or commiserate/agree/send virtual chocolate/wine/gin/hot men/cute puppies/and rant along with you.

I will happily accept any of these thank you.

And as you can see, I'll even share.

(he's also sourced via pinterest)

We all do things different ways, like different things and there's nothing wrong with that...

It would be a boring old place if we didn't.

But...yeah that little word we get told is frowned upon... but...


Your writing life might be full of positivity, and everyone will be happy for you. (They are big ugly mardy pants if they aren't) 

However, it is a given fact that it will not always be like that. For a multitude or reasons. Some petty, some not. Some a clash of wills or personalities.

You need perspective. You also need those virtual—and actual—fellow authors to be around. to make suggestions, and to help you hang on in there.

We all celebrate the calm sea and the highs with each other, we all throw the lifebelts in the lows.

We need each other.

We really do need each other. A rant safe, happy, sad, and needed place to sound off and discover you're not alone.

And after that throw me the lifebelt, or send a St Bernard with the brandy. I'm off to hone and polish my WIP before I send it into the big bad world. And get pulled up for using big words. 

Antidisestablishmentarianism anyone?

Happy reading/writing/celebrating/moaning everyone,

love Raven xx

Ps Thank you to all those who let me rant, cry, and scream with happiness whichever is needed.


  1. Wise words, Raven! We so need our support system :-)

  2. Super post Raven. I would be a mass ball of bat-shit crazy without my support group around me. No one else really understands the ups/downs of authors like other authors. I thank god for them in my life every day. Which includes you, Raven! <3