Writing often, writing lots, I’ve got that down. On a good week I average about 1k words a day. Not Stephen King speed or Saramago agility, but who ever said you had to be best in show to be seen as cute or impressive? (I really hate that I just used a dog show reference)
Another tip I read many times is that having someone read your work is not only necessary but stressful.
Analogy: Woman walks into the waiting room at the hospital where she just labored 17 hours in the other room, alone, questioning herself, her life, her ability as a mother as she enters that role. She’s sweating. Her loved ones are sleepy, if awake at all, where they’ve waited this entire time. She told them all she was pregnant, that she was carrying a child. Her husband stood by her side with modest pride. She is first to speak.
“Meet our new baby (insert name here).” She’s beaming with pride and relief of the ending struggle to create life from nothing.
Rather than jumping up with joy, everyone wipes unconsciousness off their chins. Each person gets up and shuffles like the elderly walking to the pill cart on a quiet afternoon. One by one they stare down at her newborn with cocked eyebrows. No congratulations. No she’s beautiful. No he’s amazing.
Then, as the new mother wonders what each of her loved ones are actually thinking, she second guesses her capabilities. If only I didn’t have that piece of chocolate cake at Betty’s wedding. If I didn’t work till the week before. I could have exercised more. Then my baby wouldn’t look like a wet wrinkled alien child. It would look as perfect as the dolls she held at the one Lamaze class she sat in on before quitting because she couldn’t juggle the schedule conflicts.
It’s a child.
Do I have to look at it?
Why don’t you make your husband look at it.
Me? Why me? I’m not a doctor. He should look at it. I had to hear about this damn thing for 9 months. I already know what it looks like.
We’re still talking about writing if you’re wondering.
That’s how I feel. My baby. And everyone just shrugs saying, Oh, look. Yay. You have a kid, too. Whoop-de-do! You’ve joined the ranks of millions, nay billions of people who have babies every day. Move on! It’s just a child. It’s just a story. It’s just a book. It’s not even that great…