N is for Naive
I read a comment last week on one of my posts – it was a post about everything involved in making it as a writer – and the comment talked about how it helps to be a little naïve when we’re first starting out. I couldn’t agree more.
Like many of us, I knew absolutely squat when I began my foray into writing a book. How do you gauge when it’s long enough? Pages? Word count? How many words per page? How many pages is a typical book? How many chapters…scenes…and how long is each of those? I mean I started at ground zero…check that, I was ten feet under ground zero. When I finished my book I let a few people read it (relatives and friends) and they told me it was really good, and that I should try to have it published. How do you do that? Thus began the slow process of educating myself…after a period of trial and error, mostly error of course.
I look back on all that now and cringe when I think about how naïve I was. I’m sure it’ll make an interesting tale when I finally do get published, but so is the story about my first date and I’m not anxious to be sharing that one anytime soon either. The thing is, when you’re going through it you don’t really realize how uninformed you are or how you appear to the experienced others. It’s not until you wise-up and start learning how things work (these blogs are a major step in the right direction) or somebody takes pity on you and points out your miss-steps does the humiliation begin to sink in.
The positive thing about my naivety is that by the time it wore off I was so invested in what I was doing that there was no turning back. Ignorance is bliss and sometimes that’s just what we need to launch a pre-emptive strike against our insecurities. Do I know everything there is to know about writing a good book and becoming published now? Heck no...far from it...but I am at a point where I've left wide-eyed innocence and awkward bumbling far behind. How about you?
This spring a short story of mine will be my first foray into publication via the anthology series AN HONEST LIE. It would be naive of me to downplay the significance of that, and thankfully that’s something I no longer am. :)
Did you know I was holding a contest during the A-Z Challenge? You can read all about it HERE.