There’s a point at which, as writers, we find ourselves sitting on the floor and sobbing hysterically.
You think I mean metaphorically.
We’re a weird, piebald mix, writers. We’re thin-skinned, delusional, always-hopeful, always-despairing; a quivering, mushy bundle of nerves and irrational fears; more than slightly mad and almost invariably difficult to live with. We ride highs and lows like the worst addicts out there, exulting with each small success and crushed by each small failure or setback.
We sit on the floor sobbing over something that a night’s rest would show us is not the end of the world. We’re convinced at every review that doesn’t positively praise our book to the skies that we’re the worst excuse for writers that ever lived. Five minutes later we’re at it again, writing furiously and certain that we’re gonna be famous soon, because this book is THE BEST BOOK EVER. Then when editing time comes around again we know we can’t write for peanuts, and the whole cycle starts again.
Part of this is good. If we weren’t so thin-skinned we wouldn’t be much good at writing: there’s a necessity to feel and anguish and exult, to know what it feels like, what it tastes like, what it is to be all these things. In one form or another, it all goes into our writing; and if we’re VERY good, our readers feel those things with us.
But it doesn’t make us terribly easy to live with. If we’re not crashing, we’re exulting. We’re usually talking about ourselves, or our books. We’re horribly self-centered and self-absorbed.
(Or, yanno, that could just be me).
So I want to take a moment of appreciation for my significant other, The Hubby. He’s wonderful, and sweet, and can be so very patient with my vagaries and self-absorption. He doesn’t read my books, but he’s as proud as can be and supports me in all the important ways.
Cheers to all the Significant Others out there. We love you. We’re thankful for you, even when we forget to say so.