I have this crazy idea of being a writer. Impossible though it seems, I’ve never been able to let go of this idea. It started in the sixth grade. No, I take that back. It started in the third or fourth grade with Harry Potter. Those books inspired me and brought something inside of me to life, something that I didn’t know was sleeping, and something that I don’t think I could live without today. So yes, it started with Harry Potter. More specifically, with my love for Draco Malfoy.
Draco Malfoy?! I know, I know. It’s still hard for me to say to this day that I hate who he is as a character when I find such appreciation for all of J.K. Rowling’s characters. Except Umbridge. She can go to… well anyway. So yes, young me was in love/obsessed with Draco Malfoy. Which led me to using my googling abilities to search him. Which led to the cancer of my life: fan fiction.
I say cancer only because I truly waste most of my life reading it. Honestly, I have given up social outings to stay home and read it. I have a problem.
So, yes, fan fiction is where Harry Potter lead me but I swear, something positive comes from this. I loved – love – fan fiction if I’m being 100% honest. I have pairings and ships and OTP’s and so on. I started reading Draco Malfoy x Original Character fan fictions and it exploded from there. I was and still am that girl.
Soon, I found myself wanting things, certain fan fictions, that either didn’t exist or I couldn’t find. I was getting frustrated and angry over it. Then, one day in Mr. Brown’s sixth grade Social Studies class, I had an idea and I also had a blank composition notebook. I pulled out the notebook and began my first fan fiction. Funny enough, it wasn’t about Harry Potter. It was actually about my friends and me going on an adventure in Middle Earth. This was before I even read LotR but I was obsessed with the movies. Just ask my mother.
As I wrote in class that day, I felt something akin to pride fill my being. I was excited! I could write about anything I wanted and no one had to know. For the first time ever I felt like I could truly say and express what I was thinking and feeling. So, I wrote more fan fictions. I started creating characters and plots, and ideas just kept forming inside my head. I became a better writer overall and English soon became my favorite subject. I wrote and wrote and wrote until finally I had an original idea for a book. My first actual original idea born from the creativity blooming inside me. And the rest, as they say, is history.
Except, maybe it’s not. You see, I’ve never actually finished writing anything. I get these ideas for characters or plots and I get so caught up with writing it in my head that I don’t actually put it down on paper, at least not quickly enough. I’ll finish a story in my head and then my mind moves on to the next idea before I’ve finished writing it all down. Going back to an idea is hard for me. Sometimes, the idea will naturally circulate back through my head and I can find the motivation to keep writing it months or even sometimes years later. Other stories lay forgotten in a wasteland of abandoned works.
Like I said at the beginning – I want to be a writer but I’ve never dedicated much into the idea. I’m terrible at commitments, and writing is a huge one. I’ve never finished anything, I’m not good enough, I don’t have time, being a writer isn’t a real career for normal people. All these excuses and reasons why not instead of reasons why. So here I am, trying again despite the likelihood of failing, and making a plan.
My idea is unoriginal and simple in theory. The first book I am writing and currently working on is an Adult Fiction, I suppose though I’m not entirely sure that’s the correct genre. The average adult fiction is 60-85k words according to litrejections.com. Jeff Goins also published 10 Ridiculously Simple Steps for Writing a Book (click here for link) and step number 2 is set a daily word count goal. My daily minimum goal is 300 words. Hardly anything.
I did the math. If I write a book that is 80,000 words and write the minimum everyday then I will finish the book in 267 days when rounded up. There are 247 days left in 2017, so even though my goal was to have a book finished by 2018, this probably won’t be happening.
267 days to write a book. This is without editing it, which I know I’ll be a perfectionist about once I start so I’m gonna save it for the end. Adding in editing time, I’ll say it’ll take me about 290-ish days to completely finish a book. This is my idea. So far, I have gone above and beyond my minimum daily word count. It’s about remaining committed which, for me… we’ll see.
I hope I can do this. I need to do this, honestly. This book idea isn’t my best, but so far I’m proud of my idea and my work. But I have other ideas. This one seemed like a good starting point since the other ideas I have are far more complex and will really push my writing abilities to the limit. I’m hoping this book will be a confidence builder and proof to myself that I can finish something.
I don’t really want to rely on writing as a career, but I do want to be published one day and hopefully soon. Is that weird? I feel most people, when they say they want to be a writer, mean that they only want to be a writer. Maybe I’m afraid to allow myself to be the struggling artist type and that’s why I’ve never really put much stock into only being a writer. Maybe being a writer is just every young person’s dream. Either way, this is happening right now. If nothing comes from it, then nothing comes from it. I’ve got nothing to lose by trying.
That’s all I have right now. Just a dream and an outline to accomplish that dream. I’d like to hear the dreams about anyone who’s reading this. What is it and how do you plan to or how did you accomplish them? Honestly, just tell me anything.
~ Jessa ~