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Posts tagged with: writer’s heart

There Is No Use Denying Who You Are

This is a republished blog posted here on the Ruby Slippered Sisterhood as Closet Writers that was felt by many of our readers. I hope it will connect with a few more as we go into a new year.

Closet writers break my heart. Any reason a writer keeps their writing a secret is just wrong, unless the writing is extremely personal and not meant for other’s eyes. I was a closet writer.

There are many reasons why writers remain in the closet and the Rubies have had discussions concerning them. At some time or another, many of us have faced the road-blocks that kept us from being us.

Some writers think they haven’t read enough books to be considered a writing expert. In their minds, if people find out they write, they must’ve read every single book ever published. I’m here to tell you that I’ve never read Huck Finn, War and Peace, Fifty Shades Of Gray or a zillion other classic or best-selling books. Does that confession make me less of a writer? I think not.

Being shy, it can take years for some people to join a writer’s group. A long, long time ago, when the internet was young and a thing called dial-up was used to connect to it, writers actually went to public meetings to connect with those of like minds. Walking into a meeting can be daunting to a wall flower. I know because I’m an introvert. The internet and the ambiguity it provides, has made it easier for some writers to connect to others, but not all. They remain in the background, unsure of themselves. To them, I say, “it’s always the quiet ones who make the biggest impression when they’re ready.” Rest assured most writers are genuinely nice and more than willing to help other writers in any way they can. You only need to be serious about the craft to be considered a writer by them.

A closet writer might feel they don’t know enough about the craft and until they know all there is to know they remain in seclusion. I’m not sure if there is anyone out there who knows it all. Well, maybe King, Patterson or Nora. Only they can answer that question. The point being, the majority of writers will openly admit that they don’t know everything and that they learn something new all the time. Join the club that strives to be better at their craft.

My writing sucks. It very well could, but are you the best judge? You’ve read and studied and wrote and edited. Now it’s time to trust yourself and share your work. If a critique offers constructive advice, weigh it, and then accept it or not. In the end, it’s your story. There is no greater joy for a writer than when a reader enjoys your work. The only way to know that joy is to share your gift.

There are those who really, really want to be a writer but struggle to do the work required. Writing is hard work and takes a huge amount of time. Completing a work is possible a word at a time. Commit to the work, or perhaps another hobby would be better for you.

I’m fortunate. I’m a writer who has had the support of family and friends for many years, but that wasn’t always the case. I once was a closet writer. I was told that my dreams of becoming a published writer were stupid and thus I hid my passion. Now, when I read the notebooks I filled during that time, I cringe at the darkness that shadowed my life.

One day, I finally broke and said to myself, “This is my life and I don’t want to look back and wonder what if I’d taken one step. Would my dreams have come true?” That was a year of change for me on many levels. It was a hard trial but through it I learned I had the support of many family members. I read craft books. I joined a writer’s group. I wrote and wrote and wrote. I attended conferences and workshops.  I found more support through my writer friends. I met the man of my dreams and he became my biggest supporter. I will love him forever for letting me be me.

Life doesn’t give us do-overs, but it does give us second chances. Take the step toward being you.

 

Autumn Jordon is the award-winning author of Perfect and Perfect Hearts.  She enjoys writing  contemporary romance, romantic suspense and thrillers/mysteries.  Subscribe to her newsletter at www.autumnjordon.com and be entered into members only contests. perfect-box-basic-2

Happy Holidays

christmas_tree1It’s the blessed time of year and the world, preparing for a celebration is in a spin.

The Rubies thoughts are turning to the priorities of our hearts.

Letting the holiday come and go without telling our readers Happy Holidays would be a sin.

We cherish your support and wish you the merriest of days while we’re apart.

Delight in the hugs given, relish food and the drinks of the season, even if it’s Uncle Joe’s bathtub gin.

Most of all, be safe, and please pray for those who carry worry and sorrow during this season.

Happy Holidays! See you on the 26th.

                            ~The Rubies

Meet Lucky 13 Golden Heart Finalist Piper Huguley

Today, we’re thrilled to welcome Lucky 13 Piper Huguley, 2013 Golden Heart finalist in the Historical category for her manuscript A CHAMPION’S HEART, the fourth book in The Bledsoe Sisters series.

There’s been some talk lately about the pending “death of the historical”—by which people seem to mean, “I’m getting a wee bit tired of misses flouncing around ballrooms.” One obvious solution: turning our attention to some fresher parts of history, as we’ve seen in the uber-popular series Downtown Abbey, or Jeannie Lin’s amazingly entertaining romances set in Tang Dynasty China (shameless Ruby plug: check out Jeannie’s brand new book, The Sword Dancer!)

Piper Huguley is carving out some fresh historical territory of her own: the era of The Great Migration, the decades in the early 20th century when African-Americans left the South in search of wider opportunities. It’s a time full of very real struggle and real adventure, with all sorts of challenges to pull lovers apart. (You can learn about the period by following Piper’s fascinating blog, All God’s Children Need Traveling Shoes.)

Here’s the blurb for A CHAMPION’S HEART:

1935 Pittsburgh:  Aptly-named Champion Bates is an up and coming Negro contender who harbors a secret—he could lose his eyesight if he keeps boxing. He is tormented by a love lost–at the moment of their elopement; he abandoned his childhood sweetheart, Cordelia “Delie” Bledsoe for his career. Seven years later, Delie needs financial help to sustain her orphan’s home. To prove his love, he will fight—one more time—and give her the winnings to maintain her heart’s desire.  Will Delie rediscover her love and forgive him in time to prove she has A Champion’s Heart?

Wow–see? You have not read this before. And it sounds amazing.

Take it away, Piper!

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piper copy

“It’s a heart thing”

My novel, A Champion’s Heart, is replete with hearts. The heroine’s name, Cordelia, means heart. Her child, Neal, has a heart ailment that keeps him a small size.  And the boxer hero, Champion Bates, has to have “heart” to fight one more time against staggering odds.

I’m still waiting for Carol Ritter (or one of the Fry sisters, maybe) to call me and say there was a math mistake–that RWA didn’t intend to nominate a such a strange little story set in the 1930’s featuring African American characters. However, it’s the first novel I’ve written that has come through me in such organic way.  Let me explain:

In a lot of fiction writing programs, the prevailing attitude for writers who use their own life experience in their stories is one of disdain or near disgust.  As a graduate of such a program, I was well-trained in embracing this attitude. Yes, I too, fell into the trap of thinking that such writers had no imagination.

And my writing stalled for years and I never understood why.

Until last summer.

The Latest Comments

  • Lydia Stevens: I think where I am struggling with this the most is because Atlantis is typically a lost city, a...
  • Lydia Stevens: I wrote mine two ways, one I’ve had stuck in my head for my pitch on Saturday at a conference...
  • Elizabeth Langston: This is so true! Editors are like readers, they have subgenres and tropes they love–and...
  • Darynda Jones: I have an INCREDIBLE developmental editor who looks over my work before I send it to my publisher....
  • Lydia Stevens: Hi Autumn! Thanks for the post. I love my editor. She is amazing. I would also like to point out, it...

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