Good morning, cyber-world. I know it's Monday, but we can get through it! ;)
Over the weekend, I got my print copies of Unbreakable Hostage.
Seeing and holding your own book is an experience beyond all description!
We also did a lot of work around the house - especially going through our stuff that we had just stored away and not given any real attention. A couple of sore backs and a violation from a Furby (it was comical, really! I accidentally sat on a plastic furby's ear. Let's just say that my hiney is STILL recovering! LOL), I'm glad that we did. We found a bunch of my old writings. Some of the novels I had written as a kid and a piece I had written in elementary school which my teacher and mother both fawned over tremendously.
(This was how my mother and I normally interacted! LOL)
Finding those old writings, plus doing a bunch of "networking" on Facebook (formerly known as myspace whoring) really got me thinking. As a writer, you want to network with as many people as you can. You want to get noticed. You want to get fans. You want to get readership. That's how we make money.
Here's the thing. EVERYBODY wants to write "the great American novel." EVERYBODY. People think it's easy. People think they have talent, when they don't even know when to use "there," "their" or "they're." Seriously. If you don't know, PLEASE reconsider the idea of actually writing a 60,000 work book. Quite personally, I would NOT want to edit that person's book!
I also have a "friend" on Facebook who thinks he is a literary genius. He posts quotes from his book. I'll be nice and spare his name. I will say that they just flat out suck. It's obvious that he's trying too hard. He thinks he is writing beautiful, poetic, MEMORABLE things. He's really just making an ass of himself. Even the Mrs. thinks so! His writing is blatantly horrible. I'm sorry to say it. I'm sure he's a nice guy, but a writer he is not! LOL.
Anyway, here's my dilemma, world: how do I know if I am any better than the average Joe? Is it because I am with an indie press and not self-published? Is it because I write to write, not to just see my name on a cover? Is it because of my early writing accomplishments? Truthfully, I don't know. Perhaps I am really no better than that guy whose work I abhore! How can I be sure that I am a REAL writer and not some schmoe who just THINKS she can write?
Yes, I know the difference between "there," "their" and "they're." I know when to use semi-colons. I know not to end sentences on a proposition. I know about contractions (and I don't mean the kind you have when in labor!). I have a thesaurus, a dictionary, a phrase book, two Spanish-English dictionaries, a pocket dictionary, and a dictionary of synonyms, antonyms, and homonyms on my desk. So, I have many resources available to me. Smart writers have reference books. ;)
Do I go by the fact that I have people tell me how much more they want after having read Loving Her? They say that a good artist (using any platform or media) will always leave their audience wanting more. Since I've heard that quite often, perhaps I should take that as a cue. Or is that being too presumptuous of me?
It's really hard for me to know, quite honestly. I'd love to believe that I have genuine talent. I've had the passion for writing as far as I can remember. I was nationally published at age 14. Not many people can say that. So yes, I have some bragging rights. Bragging rights don't automatically make you a good writer, though. The pursuance and constant improving of your craft makes one a good artist. Therefore, I shall continue to push myself in the hopes that I will truly be a GOOD writer some day! :)
Happy reading! :)