Firsts: remembering that we matter

When the idea for Dreams the Insanity entered my life nearly 3 years ago and I chose to follow its haunted voice into the world of writing, editing, and querying, I had little idea what was involved or at stake. I knew nothing of the submitting world: the query letter, the polished manuscript, the daily email checking. I’ve learned a lot since Kat’s and James’s voices found me, and I’ve experienced a lot of firsts.

First query letter

First rejection

First tears at a rejection

First feeling of elation at a partial request

First feeling on top of the world at a full request

First writing contest

And a new one I experienced this weekend: First character quoted by a reader

I was talking on the phone with my dad, who had just finished reading the rough draft of the sequel to Dreams, and he was talking about the ending and how it made sense based on something a different character foreshadowed earlier in the book.

And then he quoted the character. Okay, it was more or less a paraphrase, but it was the essence of a specific sentence my character said.

My dad began stating what one of my characters had said! I couldn’t stop thinking about this. It was such an incredible feeling! To have my words, words I had found in my mind, formed into coherency and placed deliberately, quoted back to me was a truly memorable and amazing experience. I am writing this down today to remember it, to remember how it feels when my written words have been validated by a reader. To remember the joy it gave me to see my art affect another person.

Nothing we do is without effect. What we do matters, who we are matters, and when these two combine it creates a meaningful interaction. We have purpose. What we do has purpose. May you remember your importance and value this day, with the knowledge that you touch others’ lives more than you realize, and if you’re lucky, you’ll have the incredible experience of seeing the results of your purpose in someone else.

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