The pitfalls of your friends knowing you’re a writer – Zahra Owens
When non-writers ask me about writing it’s often abundantly clear they don’t grasp the concept of what it means to be a writer.
“So when is your next book coming?” (about two months after my last one)
“Well, I’m working on it.”
“So when? September?” (it’s July)
“No, it’s not all written yet. And once it is, it needs to be beta’d and edited and formatted and…”
Non-writer’s attention is drawn by passing squirrel. “So, December then?”
“Yes, December 2015 sounds about right.”
Another thing that’s hard to explain is inspiration.
I’ve been going through a writing slump. The last book I published was put on the market in September 2013, so a year ago. This means the last book I finished writing is now almost two years old.
When non-writers hear this the first question they ask is not really a question. It’s usually uttered with a compassionate look on the non-writer’s face. “So… ran out of inspiration, did you?”
I wish the stories would stop coming. I wish the characters would stop harassing me to write their story. I wish the voices would stop.
Okay, not really. I’m a writer, I relish the voices and the characters and the non-stop inspiration. I live for them. There’s very little that gives me more satisfaction than sitting in a busy place people-watching and imagining the stories behind what I see. If all this went away, I’d probably be certifiable.
It’s just been really hard to finish anything. Life threw me a few curveballs and, although I thought I was handling them well, in truth, I wasn’t.
I went over what I’d written, again and again, trying to find where I went wrong, because when a story doesn’t come together, it’s usually because I forced a character into a situation that wasn’t right for him. And I drew a blank.
Just for the record, during my “writing slump”, I wrote about 300,000 words. That’s 4 to 5 novels worth of stuff, but what do I have to show for it right now? Not much. I have one finished novel, which is being beta’d as we speak, and about four in various stages of completion. The one novel I absolutely need to write is probably the slowest to come together (and the least written) which truly bums me out, because my readers expect this one and I don’t want to disappoint them.
Because where would we be without our readers, old and new?
Disclaimer: No non-writers were harmed during the writing of this article. Two characters stopped talking to me and one (1) writer is still in recovery.
The writer will be well enough by the time GRL comes along, though. One commenter will receive a signed, dedicated copy of their Zahra Owens novel of choice, handed to them personally at GRL in Chicago, October 16-19, so make sure you are there, or that one of your friends can pick it up from me there!
Zahra Owens is a multilingual globetrotter who loves big cities but also has a weak spot for the wide-open spaces that are so rare where she lives.
She likes her men every which way they come and never tries to change them. Men who are tough on the outside but have a huge soft center get extra credit, though, as do the strong, silent types who think they hide their damage well… but don’t. She makes it her personal goal to find them their happily-ever-after, even if the road toward this leads via hospital beds, villas with gorgeous vistas, or ranges full of horses.
Zahra is a board member of the Rainbow Romance Writers, a special interest chapter of the Romance Writers of America, and won’t quit until M/M romances are treated like every other romance story. RWA allowed her into its Professional Authors Network, but she hasn’t quit her day job yet since it allows her to work in a man’s world. And what girl can resist that?
If Zahra had her wish, a day would have at least thirty-six hours, because how else would she find the time to finish all the novels still inside her head?
You can find Zahra at http://zahraowens.com.
One of Zahra's latest release was:
Cleary Palit by Zahra Owens
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press; 1 edition (May 31, 2014)
Amazon Kindle: Cleary Palit
Edward “Ted” Cleary and Cazimir Palit have shared everything for eight years. Well, almost everything. They own a successful business together, share a house in West Hollywood, and never travel anywhere without each other, but they've never slept in the same bed.
There's one more thing Ted hasn't shared with Caz. Ted has a mother, sister, and brother in Atlanta Caz has never met. With good reason. They threw Ted out when he wouldn't "change his ways," and he's never looked back. When Ted is rejected all over again, Caz steps up and proves he isn’t the superficial man Ted always took him for, and Ted’s long-hidden feelings might finally be returned.
A story from the Dreamspinner Press 2014 Daily Dose package "Mended".
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