Ask any author how they feel each time they hold their latest novel in their hands, and they'll all say the same thing, "It's like holding my baby for the first time."
The thing is, it's exactly like that. You've labored and stewed until it became the perfect bundle of joy. Now, here it is, a little piece of your soul.
This part of being an author is easy for other people to understand and accept. The side people do not understand is the laboring and stewing bit, which brings me to this blog post...
Lately, I've seen several of my peers lamenting their lack of writing time. Social media has forced the natural recluse out of the shadows and into the virtual world of non-stop chatter and distractions. It's become so we live in fear of unplugging. We have all become so reachable everyone is afraid of offending someone if they are not.
I see these conversations roll past me when I raise my head from working long enough to peek in online. The other day, it finally struck me as to why this topic burrows under my skin...
If someone pirated your book, you would rise up like the enraged, protective parent you are and bring the fires of hell raining down upon their heads. Why do you protect your baby but not the labor?
The hard work, the writing process, and your ideas are the foundation of everything. There would be no books without writers.
Think of all the great authors you've loved and how they've touched your life. Picture the feeling you have when you read the final words of a book, in that series you can't get enough of. Once you have that feeling locked in your head, ask yourself, what do I want from that author?
Answer: To write more damn books!
You don't care if they are tweeting or on Facebook. As a matter of fact, if they were your neighbor you might poke them in the ass with a pitchfork if you saw them screwing around instead of pumping out the next adventure. So, why are you convinced you shouldn't unplug and simply write?
As your friend, colleague,and fan, I'm begging you to get to work. If you do have someone online who is making you feel as if you should always be Johnny-on-the-spot or your not worthy of your profession, then you need to cut them from your life. Those people don't care about you, not really.
People who care want your happiness. Fans want your next book.
As a reader, I love all the authors who have brought me such joy and a place to escape when life gets too rough. If I tweet about your latest novel, like your post on Facebook, or write a review, I DO NOT expect a response. If you care about me at all, you'll keep writing. Please feed my need to read.
As an author, I adore my readers. I check in daily and I'm constantly humbled by you. If I miss your tweet or message, I sincerely apologize. Please know, If I'm unavailable it's because I love you and I'm working as hard as I can to bring you a new place to escape.