The last novel I finished writing was in... November of 2017. And it was terrible. Trust me, I've reread it and it's terrible.
My lifetime writing word count on the Nano website says that I've written 460,057 words. (Which isn't counting the two books I wrote during Camp Nano. Or the stories I've written over the years.)
I've written over 500,000 words. Half a million words and I'm no closer to my dream of becoming a published author. Please, don't tell me the stats of people writing for twenty years. I've written for ten and am not getting any closer. And please don't bring up Stephen King's "On Writing" about how the first million words you write are "practice". Don't. Not a fan. At all.
It's not that I don't love to write. I did. I do. But I don't at the same time.
I was writing to become a published author. And that stole my dream from me. I spent two years on revisions for an agent. Two years of rewriting and waiting for a response. I worked on other stuff, but that was my main focus. I was so close. I could feel it. And then I got a form rejection. After two years of changing my novel, making it what this agent was looking for and improving it. Yes, it needed those improvements, but then I was told the voice suddenly wasn't what they were looking for. Two days after I sent it and the reply came from an intern, not the agent I was emailing initially. I guess I hoped that the agent would read my hard work after they requested it. Nope.
I didn't understand. I was hurt. Very hurt.
I didn't respond to the email, just labeled it "rejected" and moved it to the appropriate folder.
I tried not to think about it. I cried over it. I tried to write on that book again. But I couldn't. It was... tainted in a way for me. I tried to reread it, but I couldn't see what was wrong. I tried having someone else "see" what I couldn't. She was great and very helpful. I tried to rewrite with some of her suggestions.
And that's when I stopped writing.
Not actively. There were a few opening pages of books I wrote. But I never made it any further.
I didn't. I don't feel it anymore. I don't feel that dream.
Recently, I've moved to a new state and I'm working on new things. I've started my own Etsy shop and I'm enjoying making baby blankets. It gives me joy! Knowing that a little baby is going to love my blanket and snuggle it, it's very nice for me! I'm looking into other ways of giving back. There's an idea I'm tossing around, but I haven't worked out the logistics yet. I'm still working on it. I'm still reading. I'm trying to read more and more. Hopefully, this might encourage/inspire me to want to write again. I'll continue working on my Star Trek fanfiction.
For now, I don't have any stories to tell. No stories to share. I've un-published my novella and I wish I could remove it from Goodreads, but sadly no. No one can read it now and that's okay. I never even made back what I put into it. (Not that writing is about the money, but about being read and that didn't happen either.)
And it's NOT that I'm not strong enough to be a writer. I'm damn strong enough. I would wallpaper an entire house in the hundreds of rejection letters. I just don't care about it. I'm not passionate about it. My chances of being a writer are like someone going to Hollywood. Except my rejections are all online.
I am happy. I'm happy with most of the things in my life right now. I enjoy my job and the new city is wonderful! All of the new adventures. But for now, I'm not a writer.
It does feel like I failed in a big way. I'm 30 years old, unmarried and I haven't become an author. The dream I had since I was eleven. There are others dreams in my life I haven't achieved either and it's discouraging.
This post is bittersweet. A part of me still wants to be a writer, but I can't right now. And I don't know about the future of my writing. For now, I don't write books. I could keep rambling, but I won't. There's no real conclusion of this, but I'm not a writer. I can't.