Image by madamepsychosis via FlickrLike many fellow aspiring authors, I have dreamed about the day I would see my words in print. In some of my visions, I cry and clutch the bound book to my chest before thrusting it up to the sky in triumph.
It's a lovely picture to a daydreamer.
Reality hits as soon as I wake up, and I realize with a modest amount of recollection that my dreams won't come through wishing. I have to put in the effort, and I do. I write everyday, but just writing isn't enough.
A writer has to be willing to expand and search out opportunities to better him or herself. Also to accept that authorial reknown can come in many forms.
If you had asked me only a few months ago if I would be publishing articles in my college paper about standardized testing, the conflict in the Middle East, or Study Abroad to China, I would have answered a confused "Not that I know of?"
You see, I was so focused on the Big Picture that I lost track of the process. Sometimes you have to start at the bottom. It's humbling and you get more out of it, I think, than if you have instant success and bestsellerdom. (Although I'm not going to say I wouldn't like that instant success.)
The truth is that when you write you have to make certain concessions. For authors, you have to be willing to work with the editors and others involved in the making of the book. For unpublished, unknown, authors-in-waiting you have to be amenable to being published in a smaller way.
For me, that constitutes writing articles about topics I may or may not be interested in just for the sake of getting my work out there to a small readership. I'm slowly but surely making a name for myself as a writer, and what I've found is that there are some people who really love what I write.
I'm reaching those few and it makes me feel all fuzzy inside like I've swallowed some vinegar. It's a good feeling, in case you don't know what it's like to drink vinegar. (Insert your scared laughter.)
Anyway, I'm now the official book reviewer for my college paper, The Vanguard, and I'm happy with where I am right now. I write articles for the Opinion and Etc. sections, and it's great experience.
No, I still don't have an agent. No, I still don't have a *perfect* title for my book. (Any suggestions would be fantastic. It's about superheroes.)
But I do have some peace. I'm in the eye of the storm right now and I can see things clearer than I have in days past. I'm not a psychic, but I feel like my future is bright.
But then again, don't we all?
Until next time...keep writing and wishing!