I remember it vividly. I was sitting at my desk in our school room. It was relatively late at night and everyone was asleep except for my older sister and my dad. The lights were dim. My big purple binder sat on the desk before me, open and ready for the last words that would dub it "finished". My hands were shaking so badly as I scribbled those last few words.
|Since this was the first book in a series, I didn't feel like I could |
write "the end" but I had to write something XP
They were shaking because I knew I was close to the end. I'd been working towards that moment for almost two years. I knew each word that would form the story's closure. I'd had them planned for a very long time.
And finally I was writing it.
Hands shaking, I managed to scratch out those last few words. Then I set my pencil down, stared at the old notebook page ... and burst into tears.
I sobbed hard for probably ten minutes. Maybe longer. My sister and dad came in and asked what was wrong and I could just manage to croak out, "I finished it."
A year and eight months since I'd started writing this story, I wrote the last words. Why did I sob my eyes out? (I was twelve, by the way) I've never cried when finishing a book since then. I cried twice when I wrote my WIP, but that was during one really touching scene that always makes me almost cry, and while writing the very very tragic climax. Both really emotionally gripping and difficult scenes. But not the ending.
So why was my first book different?
It was my first book. And if you've never finished a book before, you'll probably sympathize with the point I'm about to make.
Up until that moment ... I wasn't sure if I could do it.
A lot of people "write stories" after all. Pretty much all of my friends had at least started a story at one point in their lives, but they didn't usually make it past page three. So when people heard I was a writer, they just assumed I was like them. Not really serious about it. I made it past chapter three pretty quickly (thanks to my cousin) but I still wasn't sure if I was really a writer. I wasn't sure if I had it in me to write a full length novel ending in "The End."
But I did. (you could argue that I didn't, actually, since I didn't end with "the end" but we'll not go into that right now)
*dumps a couple more pictures on you just cause*
|I had a hanging bed for several years around this time, and I developed |
this ritual of sorts where when a big thing happened,
I'd write under my bed. And so, obviously, I wrote under it that night. XP
|I am way too sentimental but this is the calendar from that year|
(forgive my atrocious handwriting ICK)
I also felt like no one believed I could do it. This belief is probably really wrong, but it was there, wedged in the back of my mind. No one takes you seriously, it would whisper. No one believes in you. You should just give up. You're not good enough to write this, anyway.
But I did. I wrote the book. I pushed through and ground out all four hundred and fifty-three pages of it.
|*sniffles* my little baby|
I didn't give up.
If you haven't finished a book yet, let me tell you this. You will. You will if you don't give up. So don't give up.
No one believes in you? Who cares. God believes in you. That's why he's given you this passion. This gift. Now it's time for you to believe in you. Believe in yourself. Trust that God knows what He's doing with your life, and plunge in head first with everything you've got.
God believes in you. I believe in you. Now you need to believe in yourself.
Don't give up. Keep writing.
Have you ever finished a draft? If you haven't, are you close? If you have finished a draft, what's some advice you'd give to people who are still trying to get there?