Writing Is The Easiest Part

Occasionally I get comments or e-mails from people who want to know why this fabled “book” I’ve been talking about for years hasn’t yet materialized. It flatters me that people would actually want to read the book so much that they ask me these sorts of questions, so I feel that an explanation is owed and in order.

Here’s the truth, then: Writing is the easiest part.

Forcing yourself to go back and read through your drivel and edit it is hard.

Deleting or changing scenes or characters that you loved in the name of plot or story flow is hard.

Staying motivated on your project when you’ve got so many other things vying for your attention is hard.

Working on a creative or artistic project when you’re not in the right mood is harder than any non-artist could ever imagine.

Gathering up the courage to talk to an agent is hard.

Heck, thinking about agents is hard because it reminds you how difficult this whole thing is going to be.

Realizing and coming to grips with the fact that thousands or tens of thousands of people out there are just as talented as you are, if not more so, and also trying to do what you are doing, is hard.

Rejection is hard.

Feeling pulled every which way by friends and beta-readers giving you conflicting advice is hard.

Trying not to be scared about making the wrong move in this whole process is hard.

You see, the past couple of years have been a mind-opening experience for me in terms of this whole writing thing. I always used to figure that getting published was easy. You just had to sit down, write your story, toss it at the nearest publisher, and then POOF, you’d be set. In short, I always assumed that writing was the hardest part.

But it’s not.

Getting the story out of my head and onto paper was the easiest part of this journey so far. And, guys, that wasn’t exactly a cakewalk.

So bear with me while I get this all sorted out. You’ll have your book, I promise. Heck, you’ll have more than one. Writing more stories is, after all, the easiest part. So I guess that’s the upside to all of this!

3 thoughts on “Writing Is The Easiest Part”

  1. Hang in there! We’ll wait as long as it takes to read your debut. 🙂 This post reminds me of Bakuman, the manga about writing manga.

  2. Just hang in there, Pike! I hear ya about rejection being hard; going to a bunch of different people, trying to sell a product, and perpetually getting the same polite negative response can be downright draining. At least most people tend to be polite, which is really nice, but still.

    I find that it helps to never spend too much time on marketing at once or I get really frustrated. Do it like once a week for a few hours or something.

    And be sure to take beta reader advice for what it is; advice. Not everyone has the same vision for the story as you. Listen to beta readers as you might a detached academic; absorb what they had to say, mull it over while you read the appropriate paragraph, and ultimately accept or reject it. Don’t fall into the “OMG somebody didn’t like this part I’ve gotta change everything right now!!” trap. That was kind of a hard lesson for me to learn, actually. Just because they’re a beta-reader doesn’t mean that they get to write the story for you; they’re just giving their comments; take-em or leave em 🙂

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