I just had a short conversation with a lady who is so excited that her cousin wrote a book. She can’t wait to read it and wants to give her some positive feedback and support. I wanted to cry when I heard that. For one thing, what a beautiful impulse she had – supporting the author in her family. For another thing – why isn’t my family that supportive?
This makes it abundantly clear to me that no one in my family understands (or possibly cares) what I do – with the exception of one cousin who cheers me along from time to time. She’s bought my books – which if I’d known she was paying for them, I would have sent them to her for free, because I’m so grateful to her for that small token of love and support.
My daughter has beta read a couple of my books. She’s an angel and I appreciate that. I honestly don’t know what my sons think. None of them particularly like to read and they certainly aren’t going to be interested in my books. Romance is not their thing.
My in-laws think of my writing as some sort of phase or hobby. I’m sure they don’t take it seriously. Considering how badly it’s paid so far, maybe they have a point. They don’t have a clue how hard I work for those pennies.
My husband, God bless him, has been wonderful about letting me have the time to write. He believes in me. We haven’t made a lot of money off it, but at least he doesn’t fuss at me.
I think a lot of the problem is that people think writing is easy. They assume that anyone can write. They’re sure that somehow words miraculously appear on the page for them to read and no one has to do anything to put them there. Imagination—meh. What’s that?
Anyone can write. Writing isn’t that hard. There’s no convincing them unless I force them to sit down and write a term paper or short story. I used to write my term papers the night before they were due and got A’s on all of them. None of my classmates could do that.
One year, I did the NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month) and finished my book of 74,748 words before Thanksgiving. That afternoon, I sat down and started a new book. FOUR DAYS LATER I had another 54,067 words and a second finished novel. Grand total: 128,815 and that doesn’t include the nearly 15,000 words I cut from the first one. That would bring my total close to 143,815 words in less than 30 days.
So, when people say to me, “Anyone can write”, I tell them that. How ya like me now, hm? Think you can do that? Bet not.
I’m making a point with my rant – promise! Be like my friend who loves and supports her cousin because she wrote a book. Cheer your author friend/ family member. Buy a copy. Talk it up. Ask a book group to read it. Share their marketing posts on Facebook, Twitter, anywhere. When they get discouraged, cheer them up. When they need a lift, buy them a cup of coffee. When they lock themselves away from friends and family so they can work – give them space. If they don’t answer the phone, call back much, much later. If they talk crazy about how their characters are running amok, let them. For them, that’s real. It doesn’t mean they’re crazy, they’re just authors.
Finally, and ultimately important, realize that you’ll never fully understand, but love them.
Dellani Oakes is a slightly crazy, but mostly harmless author. She’s published five books, but her author’s brain has created many more. To purchase Dellani’s books:
Indian Summer – historical romance
Lone Wolf – futuristic romance (sci-fi)
Shakazhan – Lone Wolf book 2
The Ninja Tattoo – romantic suspense
Under the Western Sky – romantic suspense
There are also some freebies you can download by clicking here.