photo credit: U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service - Midwest Region Monarch Butterfly in California via photopin (license)
I was sitting at the hospital today waiting for a family member to be done with an outpatient procedure, when a lady who is a fan of my books walked by. (We'd met several times.) We chatted for a minute and then she told the nurse I was an author. As soon as he heard that, he got a light in his eye. "I'm a writer, too!"
As we talked, I found out that he has a lot of stories in his head, and he's written the beginnings of some, but he has trouble writing the middle and end. He was so interested in the process, and talked a lot about how he came up with characters and his world-building. I recommended some local conferences he could attend and some writers groups he could join to help him finish that first project.
I've been thinking a lot about that nurse today. I can't tell you how many people I've met that have a story in them, or secretly write, or start a story but never finish. I remember the first novel I ever wrote and how I stewed over every word and character. It felt like such an accomplishment when I finally wrote the words, "The End." I want everyone to have that feeling!
Because the thing of it is, we all have a story inside us. Whether it's a cathartic book about personal experiences,
a fiction story,
or a short story,
everyone has one.
Writing it down is like leaving a little piece of us behind,
to live beyond us,
and to share with the world.
It's nerve-wracking and scary, but at the same time it's exhilarating and thrilling.
The hard part is finishing it. The frightening part is putting it out there.
No matter what anyone thinks, though, finishing a book is an accomplishment that not many people can claim. I hope if you have a story just begging to come out of you, that you'll work on it. Page by page, paragraph by paragraph, until your story is written.
So, to the nurse at the hospital and everyone who is a secret writer, let your story out. Give it wings.
You won't be sorry and those whose lives you touch will be grateful.