A Writing Life: Tea With Lunch, Wine With Dinner

Monday, November 7, 2016

Tea With Lunch, Wine With Dinner

I'm visiting the Girl Child this weekend. My mom is with me. It's a wonderful time of rest, catching up, strolling bookstores and relaxing.

I'm learning how to discover what I like. That might sound strange to anyone who has gone through life knowing exactly what they want. I'm not proud to admit, I haven't always been that way because I worry too much about what others think.

I'm working on that. I really am.

I was strolling this gorgeous bookstore my mom and I found on our trip and it was almost lunchtime. We had noticed a darling café next door and agreed to try it once we were done book shopping. I got to thinking if I'd like wine with lunch or not. I tend to fall asleep if I have wine before evening hours. One glass and I'm in nap zone. And I'm not sure why but I stood there and thought,

"I like tea with lunch and wine with dinner."

Now, a revelation like that is not a huge one. But it was for me. It was liberating in a way. I rarely think "I would like to do this." Again, I weigh things against the thoughts and opinions of others. I'm a pretty laid back person. I'm not picky. So most of the time I'm really good to do what someone else wants.

I'm working on owning my opinions.

Its not unlike my writing life. There are genres to choose from and sub genres as well. I write Romance. But under the umbrella of Romance are a lot of sub genres: spicy, sweet, erotica, historical, paranormal…there's a decent sized list. I write sweet romances. And I love it.

But I've had to work on owning what genre is mine and letting go of what isn't.

I have friends who write fantastic paranormal romance. Some write historical. And I applaud them. Those are not my strong suit. Erotica isn't my thing. But it is for others. Cool. My theory is this:

Read and write what YOU want.

I know, I know. There's an audience to think of who want specific things. Okay. But I'm a firm believer that if I try to jam a square peg (me) into a round hole (writing outside my genre) the work isn't going to be my best.

I'm grateful I'm with a publishing house that caters to the creative in me. Although trends are watched and what readers are looking for is taken seriously,  I'm encouraged to write the stories and characters that matter to me, that move me. Because really, if my heart isn't in it, my writing will show it, and the stories and characters won't matter to the reader either.

When I write I have to block out what others think.

I can't bring to my work all the gunk in my head that floats around about what others might think or say about my writing. I need to write. Focus. Then trust my editors and publisher in the process of getting it out to readers. I have a mantra:

Write with confidence. Learn with humility.

I'm confident in my abilities as a writer. But I don't believe I'll ever cross some finish line of knowing it all. There is much to learn and I want to always be humbly willing to learn it.

I'm discovering what I like without the whispers of opinions in my head.

I love writing sweet romance.

And I like tea with lunch and wine with dinner.

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