I have a WIP page here on my website (Work in Progress) that I use to keep you kind of up to date on what I’m doing, but it doesn’t really encompass the sheer insanity of my life this year. I’ve written eight distinct works so far as Erin M. Leaf and Marie E. Blossom, and it’s only June. That’s two short stories, and six novels (some were 30,000+ words and some were 50,000+ words long). My favorite story is my worst seller. The novel I was most nervous about is one of my best sellers.
I have no idea what I’m doing.
I think, in order to understand what it is like to be a writer, you need to imagine you’re in a dream. You’re on a boat and the ocean is vast, beautiful, and treacherous. It’s nighttime and the stars are incredibly bright. You can’t stop looking at them, because you’re trying to figure out where you are. You never do. Instead, you befriend a dolphin for a little while and tell her story. Then you find an island where there is nothing but sand, and you tell the story of the lone turtle sleeping on the shore. You cast off again, and follow a reef, telling the story of the coral. Eventually you end up on another island, except this one is a continent and you head into the forest to explore. You tell the story of a mountain lion, a frog, and the mist. This continues….
You never find out where you are going, but you remember where you have been. You have no tools except for your mind itself. You are exposed all the time and you must use your wits to ignore the weirdness of having your soul visible.
If you spend too much time second-guessing yourself and obsessing over what is happening to you, you end up frozen, like a zombie with its strings cut. The zombie gets eaten very quickly because anything unmoving in this dreamscape is food. The world eats you.
That is what writing feels like to me.
I love it. Even though it’s scary.