Monday, 10 June 2013

The Closet Writer

I’ve written about this before but it was a long time ago. I think it’s important for those of you who write but in secret, afraid to pursue your dreams, for whatever reason. I was a closet writer, and in 2004 I decided to come out. Well, with a little help and encouragement from my daughter and niece. It all began when my niece and I were just having a talk one day and she said to me, “I like to write.” I looked at her with awe and said, “me too!” And from there we discussed our writing, and she convinced me into letting her read something I’d done. So did my daughter. And they both agreed it was just as good as anything else they’d ever read.

Okay, they aren’t biased or anything  I swear! But their comments, and enthusiasm did boost my confidence, and they talked me into submitting to a publisher. Dare I? What did I have to lose? So I submitted Cupid’s Arrow to Whiskey Creek Press and within a month they offered me a contract. That book, written under my real name Debbie Wallace, was on their best sellers list for two consecutive months!

Now you’re probably wondering, so, what is a closet writer? My love and passion for writing stories developed when I was about ten. I can recall writing short stories on notebook paper until I graduated with a manual typewriter at age thirteen. Thanks to my parents. I thought they were encouraging me. However, when I confessed to them that I wanted to be a writer when I grew up they laughed at me. And that crushed me. To this day I don’t think they ever understood what their reaction caused me.

From that day forward, I hid my writing, and my dreams, and didn’t talk about it again. Believing that there must be something wrong with wanting to be a writer I hid it from the world. Thought I wasn’t good enough. I typed for hours in my bedroom, my folks probably thought I was doing homework. I never let anyone know what I was doing nor did I share my stories with anyone, and I mean anyone. Not until that fateful day when a conversation between me and my niece showed me that my dreams weren’t stupid.

I published my first book on my 50th birthday, and I haven’t looked back. Next month my 20th book, Bishop's Angel comes out. And I have two more slated for this year. 

I guess the moral of the story is don’t let anyone crush your dreams. They’re your dreams, not theirs. And it’s never too late to pursue them. 

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