Book Writing: It Takes a Village

village

Hello, lovely people. I hope everyone is having a fantastic week so far. Something just happened this morning that sparked the idea for this post.

A co-worker and friend brought me a homemade frozen lasagna. This kind words accompanied his gesture: “For a night you need a little extra writing time.”

I can’t tell you how much this small act means to me. After thanking him several times, I told my friend that he was now part of a growing village of friends and family supporting my writing journey and dreams. We’ve all heard the proverbial quote “It takes a village to raise a child.” The same can be true for writing a book or accomplishing any other endeavor.

Here are some of the folks in my village. Might they somehow, some day know how much their support means to me.

  1. MY HUSBAND. Though he works long hours and is sometimes out of town for a week or more, my husband is great at giving me little pushes out of the nest, away from my comfort zone, so I make progress toward my dreams. He talks through plot ideas with me. He often spends his one day a week off holding down the fort at home so I can get several hours alone with my manuscript. But most importantly, he believes in me. He knows the desires of my heart to see my book(s) published and won’t stop until he sees that happen. Thank you, dear.

  2. MY PARENTS. My mom and dad were some of the first to read my first draft of my first novel. They cheer for me along every tiny step toward the finish line. They brag on me, oozing with a pride that keeps me going. My mom is even flying out here in a few weeks to help my husband with our daughter while I attend a writer’s conference. Since my early childhood days of poetry scribbling and voracious book devouring, they’ve been standing in my corner. Thank you, Mom and Dad.

  3. MY CRITIQUE PARTNERS. I have learned more about writing and the process from the women in my critique group than just about any others. While working on their own projects, dreaming their own dreams, they’ve invested in mine. They genuinely desire to see my writing be the best it can be. We celebrate big and small victories together. We lift each other up out of pits of doubt and exhaustion. We pray for one another. We’ve become friends. I’ll never forget these women. God’s brought me into their midst for a reason. Thank you, friends.

  4. MY MENTORS. There are two fellow Christian authors who have gone out of their way to support me in countless ways. I consider them mentors because their experience and talent encourage me to be a better writer. I’ve sat at their feet, so to speak, soaking up their wisdom and support. They have blossoming careers, yet they’ve both taken serious time to rally behind me and help me shoot for the stars. I doubt they know I categorize them as mentors…each would likely argue the title. But in this village of support, that’s just what they are. Thank you, mentors.

  5. MY CATALYST. Finally, I want to thank the person who I consider the catalyst for this journey I’m currently traversing. My friend Indi is the one who suggested back in 2013 that I try my hand at NaNoWriMo. When the idea of writing a 50,000 word novel in just 30 days (as a full-time church worker and mom to a little girl) became too overwhelming and impossible, she told me to keep going. She cared whether or not I finished. She checked in with me, told me it would be over soon, and celebrated each word-count goal. I’m not sure my first novel would have ever happened without her to tell me I could…and should…and would. And did. Thank you, Indi.

I’ve only named a fraction of the members of my village. There are dozens more friends, family, contributors to the campaign to raise funds for an editor, babysitters, co-workers, and even you…readers of this blog. I’ve been blessed by gift cards for coffee, offers for play dates (= alone time), and opportunities for weekend retreats. It’s amazing when I stop and think just how many people inhabit this writer’s village. How much richer to do this with you than alone. You all make the experience worthwhile.

Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!


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10 thoughts on “Book Writing: It Takes a Village

  1. Andrew Budek-Schmeisser says:

    Very well said, Teresa.

    I never really had a village. Becoming part of an online community of writers has been a slow process, and these people are really the only ones with whom I share any thoughts – guarded ones at that – about my writing. I NEVER talk about dreams. Early childhood experiences taught me the dangers of that.

    So most of the trip, I’ve done alone. But it worked out OK, I guess. I’m still trying to write.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Teresa Tysinger says:

      Allowing ourselves to be vulnerable to critique (good or bad) of something we hold so dear can be so difficult. I’d bet most writers suffer that ailment. I’m so glad you’ve come into my village, Andrew! You’ve always been such a supportive reader/commenter on the blog and I’m blessed the Books and Such blog introduced us.

      Like

    • Andrew Budek-Schmeisser says:

      I’m so glad I got to know you too, Teresa!

      It wasn’t so much that critiques of work (or life, or personality) were a problem for me…but early in life anything I said in regard to hopes or dreams would be used against me, and until I developed a kind of low cunning I had some pretty unpleasant times. I learned to regard the world with cold suspicion, and that has made community an uphill climb. (My wife didn’t know I had written BPH until long after I’d finished it. I simply didn’t tell her, and worked when she wasn’t around. Kind of nuts, really.)

      For what it’s worth, being an encourager was the key; I didn’t have to share, but could read others’ words carefully over time, and find ways to say something positive, to lift spirits.

      Liked by 1 person

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