I have always loved to write and when my youngest went off to college, the planets aligned and it was my moment to start.
I should back up and explain that this wasn't my first "start". In the past, I started many, many times. I wrote short stories for college assignments and even won an award, which gave me a confidence boost. But, like 80% of Americans, I wanted to write a book, in my case, a novel.
Every thing I read about being a published author was discouraging. Statistics on successful authors are depressing. As a child, I remember my father talking to a famous local author. My father explained that (as a kid) I wanted to write a book. The author was negative, telling my father how difficult it was. I remember when father told me he spoke to the author about me. I was so excited, but instead of finding out some helpful hints, the author suggested I find another dream.
Ha! Even then I was stubborn as hell. It didn't discourage me love of writing, but admittedly, it made me feel like it was hopeless to want to be an author.
Fast forward 25 years later...
I had the chance to write. After many false starts, I had a story to tell. More importantly, I had the confidence and determination to write the story. I took on the pen name Alex Ashe. How did it happen?
I wish I had an easy answer, but it was a combination of many factors- age, experience, interests and the support of Jon, my husband, who kept encouraging me to do it.
I spent at least 8 hours a day for 3 months writing. It was exhilarating! I felt compelled to share this story Death of a Player. When I wrote the characters, they appeared in my mind. I felt like I knew these people. Some I liked, some I loved and some I detested. It was truly a new experience with all these personalities living in my imagination.
When I finished writing my story, I was exhausted. And spent. And sad. I had to leave these characters. I had spent so many hours with them, and suddenly, they were gone.
I'm told that I wrote the first book (90,000 + words) rather quickly. I felt like it just flowed and took on a life of it's own. I finished it in December and thanks to my husband, I was able to self publish it on amazon kindle.
I started writing my second novel Death at the Notch, a continuation of the storyline from Death of a Player, in the spring of 2013. Because it was my second book, I learned some techniques for productivity. I'll share those in another Writing post.