I did it! I finished a story.
OH MY GOODNESS! You know how over there in the right sidebar of my blog there is a little mini bio that, among other things, proclaims me as "writer?"
And you know how sometimes we want things to be true, but when we look at our daily lives, there is little there that actually fits those things?
I say I'm a writer because I like to write. I used to write stories when I was growing up. I studied English in college. I come up with ideas for stories, or pieces of stories, all the time.
But if I look at myself honestly, I haven't done a whole lot of writing- actually getting things on paper (or computer). Even when I do, it's usually a short incomplete piece. The beginnings of a scene that could be part of something beautiful... if I ever finished it, which I don't.
And now there's a sweet little baby who keeps me busy all day every day. What a marvelous excuse not to write!
Except that I want to write. I've had this dream for a long, long time now. I just keep pushing it off as something I'll get to when I have time.
Then a few weeks ago I went to a writer's group at my local library. It's on the calendar of events every month and always think, "I should go to that," but never do. This month was different. This month I went.
I left that meeting feeling inspired and with homework. Gasp! I plan on going to the next meeting and, by golly, I will not go without having done my homework.
Then in a semi-related message from the universe, I saw this short story contest on NPR. It intrigued me. I had ideas. I had... only a week before the deadline.
When I found myself saying, "I'm going to write this story even if I don't finish it on time," I knew I was on to something.
Remembering lots of authors' advice to get something, anything, even if it's crap, down on the page, I wrote a story from beginning to end on Monday. A full story.
And I didn't like it.
By Thursday I had a new idea, so I wrote another story from beginning to end. I liked it. I slept on it. I thought about it. I reread it. I still liked it. I tweaked it, had my husband play editor, and tweaked it some more.
Last night I sent it to NPR. I finished a story and I sent it to someone. It may never be heard or seen on NPR. That doesn't matter. What matters is, I'm earning my stripes.
I AM A WRITER. Hear me roar.