I always wanted to be a writer, stories have sort of always been my life blood. I used them to help me fall asleep at night, to escape to when things got hard and a way to express myself. It was not until I attended a writing workshop in Casper last fall that I got serious about it though. I attended a session and a workshop taught by Kelly Sue DeConnick, who had no qualms about telling us how hard we would have to work if we wanted to be writers. We had to start publishing, keep doing what we loved and work at it like it was a job. She also introduced me to “The War of Art” by Robert Pressfield, which along with his other book “Turning Pro”, changed my perspective on my writing.
I had done what most people starting out in this age did. I wrote fanfiction, I roleplayed with other writers. Both of those communities taught me things about my craft but it was not until I “Turned Pro” that I started to realize they would not get me anywhere (Okay, I kind of stopped fanfiction years ago, except for a dabble here or there), I realized that roleplay was just that, something to do for fun. It wasn’t “real” writing. It was words down the toilet. Don’t get me wrong, those words generally taught me something or I picked up bad habits I would have to later correct, but all in all I regret none of it.
The other thing that I learned from that workshop was that I could submit to anthologies to start building my writing resume. I did, and sure enough the piece I wrote got accepted. It’s a little slice of my soul I’m now nervous to share with anyone who isn’t a stranger, but I’ve noticed that is sort of how it goes with writing at times. So even though this journey began long ago, I think I am finally to the point I am ready to take it seriously and find my path with it. Sure, it won’t be easy, but the good things rarely are.