Ah…the thrill of victory, the agony of defeat…
I have begun to think seriously about what I consider a ‘victory’ when it comes to my writing. To be perfectly honest, this writing ‘journey’ often feels more like a battle and not a pleasant stroll to a particular destination.
And with every battle, there are victors.
Some victories are small: I wrote 294 words today and I didn’t die! Because there are days when I can sit for hours and the words are just not flowing and it is both physically and emotionally painful. These are the days I click on microsoft word count and nearly fall out of my chair when I realize I’m only at something like 294 words and those 294 words took every fiber of my being to get on the page.
Some victories are pretty big: I wrote a novel and I didn’t die! I know some of you are knocking out multiple novels a year. I bow down to you. It doesn’t work that way for me. I started writing seriously in October 2008 and I have 1.5 novels to show for it. Right now, I’m in the midst of my second uphill battle and the fighting is pretty bloody right now. But since I did it once and I didn’t die, I figure this will have a similar outcome. I guess the big concern now is how many psychological wounds I’ll come out with in the end.
For me, there are some victories that still need to be won. I want to see a book I wrote sitting on a real or virtual shelf somewhere actual people shop. I don’t want Tyler or my poor critique partners and beta readers to be my only readers (though I bow down to you as well and thank you from the bottom of my heart.)
The big question is, which victories are enough? Is it enough to say: today I wrote 500 words? Or: this year I wrote a novel?
I really, really want these victories to be enough but lately they feel like nothing at all. In my head, I know it is NOT nothing. But in my heart, it feels like the battle has not been won.
What do you consider a victory in your writing life?