Monday, July 4, 2016

Legacy is Born

I’ve gone on and on about what I’ve been doing lately, except for what really matters to you guys: my current projects.

For Camp Nanowrimo in April I was working on my mermaid adventure, Crystallised. I finished that with a win. But I felt burnt out over it. I couldn't write anymore. So I put it on the backburner for a little while.

Now I’m working on an oldy-but-goody, my first ever book, my literary baby Legacy. What can I say about Legacy? It’s fast paced, action packed, has a strong female MC, romance, deciet, and fast cars.

Legacy was inspred by a NA book, Jamie McGuire’s Beautiful Disaster. I loved that book, how beautiful and tragic it really was on different levels. So I set out to write my own NA book. Legacy started out as Leather Angel, the first in a set of three books. I wrote that whole book out by hand in a set of spiral bound notebooks I bought at Dollar Tree.

When I started typing it, the story changed, taking on a life of its own. I hear a lot of authors talk about how when they write, the story changes and surprises them. They don’t know where the story will go or how it will change. Sometimes I wonder how that can be. How can you write something and the characters do something you don’t expect? Aren’t you writing the blasted thing? own project did just that. It changed, it surprised me. As I typed, I looked less and less at my hand-written novel. I stared at the computer screen and wrote for hours on end. The words flowed. I did no research, usually only looking online to spell a word if I wasn’t sure I had spelled it right. I made no notes as I was writing.

All I saw was the screen in front of me and the story acting as a movie inside my head. I could hear their voices, the yelling, the fear and love and sadness seeping out through my fingers.

I started typing April 2014 and wrote the final word July of the same year. Four months had gone by and I had a story. Start to finish and a whole lot of drama inbetween. It was time to start editing. I got through chapter one, then chapter two...At the end of July I was gearing up to do a major rehaul of Leather Angel.

Until my whole world came crashing down. For the first time in years, the first time ever, I was broken. Even the years of physical and mental abuse didn’t break me the way that one night late July did. The relationship I had mirrored the emotions for the book had been shattered into a million tiny pieces.

I coudn’t even look at LA again. I was done with it. Everything I wanted, that I was, I let it go. And hated it. LA became a symbol. One I didn’t want to deal with. So I deleted it. I had copies of it everywhere, in all my emails, my online storage, my computer...I deleted them all. Except for one.

I gazed at my computer screen, at this final symbol of all my hard work and emotion. I saw it in two parts: what I wanted it to be and what it had come to mean. If I was to delete it, I would lose that girl I wanted to be, no matter the consequences.

So I moved the email with LA attached to a folder I rarely used, and promptly pretended to forget it had ever existed.

For two years, I moved in a cloud of numbness. I refused to acknowledge what I was doing in the wake of that summer’s events. I had bowed under pressure, stuffing my independent will under a blanket of subservience. I held my tongue, I pretended, I was a shadow.

Until one day, I woke up. I opened that email and saw Leather Angel glaring back at me. I could feel the girl I was screaming at me to do something before it was too late. The dark thing inside my mind was growing again. The years of beating it back with a stick had ended long ago, but it was time to get that stick back out.

I opened Leather Angel and started to work. Legacy was born, and the old me right along with it.

In the past few months I have made changes, made decisions, and it has led me to this point: I am not the type to bow down and take what I get. I want so much more than what I have been given in life. I forgot who I was for a litte while, and stopped dreaming of what I could do to make the world a better place. But now I am better for it.

We all are, I think. My identity crisis saved me, saved me from a darkness I can only hope will go back to the sleeping giant it once was. I almost threw away something precious to me, but I reeled it back in before it was too late. 


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