I can’t contain myself. I probably should. But I won’t.
Yesterday, one of my beta readers for Rising sent me a text saying (somewhat paraphrased), “So, I received this book yesterday and started reading it, and I had to force myself to stop reading and go to sleep at midnight.”
My first thought was, “Hm, I wonder what book she got. Sounds good.” Then I was like (to be read in Daffy Duck voice), “Wait a minute, I sent her MY book.”
*insert giddy squeals of joy*
I attempted to gather myself. Writers write for themselves, not their audience. I’ll get my share of craptastic reviews on this book. I must brace myself, for I know I shall be called a no-talent hack. I really shouldn’t say anything to anyone, EVER, about this, because I’ll sound like a braggy little shit.
OMGOMGOMGOMGOMG My book was that page-turner for someone!
Let’s face it, fellow writers: We secretly do write for an audience. If we didn’t, why would we ever share what we’ve written? We certainly don’t push our work out there because we love the inevitable rejection. Sure, we write our own story, the way we want it told. But when we push our babies out into the world, we’re watching and waiting and holding our breath just hoping for their acceptance.
We want people to read our work. We push boundaries and we paint emotion with words. Our deepest desire is not just to be read, but for the person on the other side of that book to have been moved, changed or at the very least entertained. We want to enrich the mind and ensnare the senses. We want to brew fame, bottle glory and even put a stopper in death.
Wait, scratch that last part. Sorry, I went all Potter on you there….
Anyway, what I’m saying is… when I write, I do it for myself. I do it because I can’t NOT write. These stories must come out. But when I release it upon the world, I know I’m not doing it for myself alone. I’m hoping that what I write makes a difference, somewhere, to someone.
And when I, as the author, get that feedback — “Hey, I really enjoyed that!” — I must admit that it does put me on top of my own little world, and it makes me feel like I’ve made a real and tangible achievement.