Sisterhood of the Traveling Blog and…a confession

Hey, gang! This week, Lydia takes the driver’s seat and discusses her writerly rituals!

Every Wednesday


Sometimes I wanna quit. Yeah. I do.


Because if I really admit it to myself and face the worry that grumbles in the back of my mind, I don’t believe I’ll EVER get published.

That’s right. I can’t envision getting past all the road blocks, over all the hurdles, through all the hoops it takes to actually hold my finished, agent and editor approved, book cover arted, publishing house funded, FANTASTIC manuscript. I just can’t. It doesn’t exist.

And it’s hard to think it ever will.

Listen, I’ve come across the whole, “oh man this is too hard for me” feeling before. And for whatever reason, I ignored it. I pushed on. I got some beta feedback that led to a break through. Every time. Miraculously.

But even with that renewed vigor, that growth in skill, I STILL don’t believe I’ll ever be published.

Why not?

Well, being “published” is for other people. For writers. For creative people who can weave a tension-filled, memorable story.

I don’t do those things. I string sentences together, hoping they’ll add up to some…




And yet, even as I draft this post, I want to hit the delete key. I want to erase the finality of this confession. If I put down the pen (or close the Word document), then I’m closing the door to the past two years of turmoil, excitement, disappointment, enlightenment, angst, joy, frustration, and elation.

Two years.

Two. Years.

I don’t know what to say.

I could turn this around and tell you all the reasons why I’m still hopeful that it WILL happen. That one day I’ll have that one final break through and see a payoff to my work. (Namely, having an agent “fall in love” with my MS.)

But I can’t. Because I don’t believe it.

Oddly (or maybe encouragingly), others do. So, I’m going to link to their posts.

After reading these, maybe you’re wondering if I REALLY am going to quit .

My answer?

Nope. Not yet. (Don’t ask me why, cuz I got no freakin’ clue.)


9 comments on “Sisterhood of the Traveling Blog and…a confession

  1. Lydia Kang says:

    Thanks for the sister shout-out, Laura! And I’ve felt the same way about quitting. I’m going to read those links you posted.
    It’s hard business, I agree. But I’m not ready to quit yet. And I still think the best is yet to come for you!

  2. vtremp says:

    Hang in there, Laura! We all go through the self-doubt. I think I feel this way on a weekly basis. I drive my husband crazy. And I think you know what to do: keep writing. Even if this ms doesn’t capture the attention you want, maybe the next one will. Or the next one. Or the next one. I’m working on my 5th!

    And you’ve had awesome progress on your WIP in the past week or so. Eventually, all the work WILL pay off! Dig deep and believe it.


  3. Two years may seem like a lot, but it really isn’t. I’ve heard it’s more common to take seven to ten years to master your craft and break in. I’m above average; I’ve been writing for about fourteen years now. I probably could have done things differently to get published sooner, but that’s OK. I really do feel my latest WIP is my strongest yet. Keep going, enjoy the journey, and don’t worry about the time.

  4. Laura! Oh, man. I hate those doldrums (and they’re forever opening up underneath me, wanting to swallow me whole). But I don’t have to tell you not to quit, because I know already that you won’t. I had a dark moment last winter, where i was SURE that I was only meant to be a copywriter, that I had no business writing fiction. Actually said those words. Then sometime during the following week, I looked up from my new WIP and went–holy shit, I forgot about quitting. I’d just upped and continued writing without even thinking about it. It’s in my DNA, like it’s in yours. And remember – it’s not about publishing. It’s about craft. And you’ve been working that craft like crazy. Go, girl!! (and thanks for those links, loved Maggie’s thoughts on it – and agree with them 100%). Hugs!!

  5. I have felt that way soooo many times. Sometimes on a daily basis. But don’t give up! I wrote and submitted short stories for nine long years before I ever got anything published. I’ve been at this for over sixteen years! Is that too long? Should I just quit? I don’t think so. You shouldn’t either.

  6. lbdiamond says:

    Aww, you guys are GREAT!!! See, this is why the writing community is so fantabulous!!!!

    It’s true, even on my worst “I wanna quit” moments, I can’t seem to stop working out this plot point or developing that character. I guess it’s in my blood now.

    At the same time, I REALLY appreciate the support for the weak moments.

    I wonder, is there a 12 step program for writers? 😉

  7. Don’t give up, Laura! The *only* way you can fail is if you quit. I admit that doesn’t guarantee you’ll get published, but not trying does!

    Hmm. I’m not sure that made sense. But we’re here to help you write on!

    (Maybe I should go to bed before I stuff my foot any deeper down my throat?)

  8. amie borst says:

    I so entirely understand where you are at right now. believe me. you’ve put into words what most are afraid – or unwilling – to admit.

    i truly believe that the thing most needed in this industry (other than good writing) is the 3 P’s….Persistence, Perseverance and Patience. don’t remember where i heard that, but it’s stuck with me.

    Just like you’ll stick with writing.

  9. Jamie Grey says:

    I’m sorry you’re feeling this way, but I totally understand it. You just have the guts to admit it out loud. I was having this same feeling a few months ago. And like an addict, I couldn’t quit either. I haven’t read any of your writing, but I *know* you can tell a story from your blog posts.

    Hang in there – Lisa Shearin, a Fantasy writer repped by Kristin Nelson recently said it took her 20 yrs to break in!

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