As always, I’d like to begin this week’s blog post by thanking all of you awesome people who’ve followed, liked and/or commented on my blog!
This isn’t just your typical blog post or progress report, as you’re likely accustomed to by now. When I first began writing this blog, I was posting three times a week, then as my writing demands increased, I eventually reduced it to once a week on Friday. Aside from breaks, I’ve kept my Friday blog posts as a way to hold myself accountable and keep anyone who cares up-to-date on my writing progress.
But today is different. Much different.
Today is release day for my first novel, Credence. And though I’ll probably never be able to put into words what this achievement means to me, I’m going to try a little here. If you don’t like sob-stories or self-congratulation, you may want to sit this one out. No hard feelings if you do.
In about three and a half months, I will turn 30 years old. Yes, I know that’s not old, not even close. But I think we could agree that most people like to have the general direction of their life figured out by then. I also think we could agree that most folks like to have at least a few milestones under their belts by then as well. Maybe you wanted to be in a certain career or field of work, maybe you wanted to be settled down and/or married, maybe you wanted to travel and see as much of the world as you could.
For me, it’s always been writing. I was writing cheesy little love stories and fanfictions in my journals long before I really knew what I was doing. An avid reader as well, I knew I wanted to contribute to the art form that I loved so dearly.
Then life happened. I got so lost in my early-mid twenties, it’s not even funny.
But writing never left me. Sure, there were weeks and sometimes months when I wrote nothing. There are pieces of my writing that I am absolutely embarrassed by. Despite this, I am proud to say, in so many ways, that I never gave up. Not when my father passed away. Not when I decided I couldn’t stomach being a paralegal. Not when I left a nearly ten-year relationship. Not when I was depressed or overweight. Never.
As a result, Credence exists today. This little book, that took me nearly three years to write and produce, means the absolute world to me because it means that I never gave up. I started writing the precursor to Credence three years ago (almost to the day). The full concept hit me in November of 2016, and I committed to a completion time frame in July of 2017.
Why? This is the direction I want my life to go in. Someday, maybe a long time from now, I want to write books full time. I want to be able to live off of my writing. THIS is the direction I wanted to be heading in by the time I reached 30.
Do I have it all figured out? No, I don’t. But I didn’t really expect to. I look at the people in my life who are older and wiser than me (HI MOM) and I can see, no one truly has it all figured out. Life can be unfair and cruel and it can change in an instant. All you can do is stay focused on the direction you want to go in and keep moving.
Do I think Credence is going to catapult me into fame? Not really. That would be awesome, but I know how the world works. I know that I’ve likely got a ways to go before I can do this for a living.
But here I am, at my first big career milestone. I’ve published a book with over three months to spare on my 30th birthday. I am so fucking proud of myself for it, I can’t even explain it.
I’ve written all of this – including the preceding blog posts and subsequent novel – to show you that it can be done. If you really, truly want something, you can make it happen. I know that I’ve had an amazing support system and I have the privilege of few obligations outside of my day job and my own bills, but at the end of everything, it was my time, money, blood, sweat, and many, many tears that made Credence happen. If you want something in life, don’t wait. Don’t let anyone tell you that you can’t fucking do it, not even yourself.
I’ll leave you with the band and the song that’s inspired me every time I’m able to achieve something big.