Wednesday, April 11, 2012

J is for Junction

Definition: the joining of two or more people, things or parts.
Writers need people.
First off they need people for inspiration. Being a psychiatric nurse and mother has given me enough ideas for at least a dozen novels. I have a journal that’s full of yellow post-its from when I observed people doing things or interacting with others (or not interacting with others) that I found particularly inspiring.  In an earlier post I asked if you would quit your job if your career as a writer took off.  There are several reasons I wouldn’t (Please note here that I only work one day a week, so continuing to work and write wouldn’t be a hardship).  I wouldn’t because being around people during life’s hardest moments teaches me to feel and love deeply. It opens my eyes to a whole different world and people I normally wouldn’t get to meet. I truly believe the characters I’ve written are all the richer because of the people I’ve grown to know and care for at work, and I’m all the richer, too.  
OK, so an idea needs people. And then, after the draft is written, more people are needed. It’s given to critique groups, or mothers, or husbands, or thirteen year old daughters, or Alpha or Betas.  In essence it is given to others to see if what you meant to tell is coming across on the page or if it needs more work. And it often does.  In some cases it’s revised, in others it’s rewritten, each time going back to people to help the writer see things they may have missed.
Finally it's just right, or so the writer thinks.
The writer sends it to agents, hopefully followed by editors, then reviewers. Finally the junction has met its desired haven when it reaches the hands of its readers.
Did you notice that I stopped personalizing somewhere along the Beta part? That’s because I’m currently in the process of looking for an agent. I could self-publish, I could, but if there is one thing I’ve learned in this whole process is that writers need people.