It’s hard and frustrating and sucks endless tormented hours out of our lives: the beast that is writing a novel.
For every day where the words come easily and we feel our plotlines and themes and character arcs click into place, there’s a dozen dark days of staring at the computer and feeling utterly empty. Days where we have to walk away and leave it all behind, just to preserve our sanity.
But we always fight our way back; keep searching for the good days, because they make it worthwhile.
Writing a novel isn’t easy. Often, it isn’t even fun.
So why do we choose to do it, when we could be out drinking with friends, or talking a walk with the dog, or flopped out on the sofa in front of the television?
Why do we put ourselves through the endless pressure and stress and self-doubt?
Why do we work so hard, striving for a faraway goal that may never even be realised?
Writing isn’t something we do for fun or to kill time on a quiet summer evening. Writing a novel is a long process, no matter how fast we can put words on the page.
We do it because we have to. Because there’s a story we just have to tell, or a character whose voice echoes through our minds day after day.
We write our novels slowly, a page at a time, line by careful, passionate line.
We will them into being.
Writing a novel is a long road, full of turns and dead ends, confusion and failure.
But like all the best journeys, it takes us into the unknown. We create our own worlds, places that even have the power to surprise us.
And when we’re finished, we can look at our work and feel proud.
We created something. Despite everything, we didn’t give up.