Thursday, August 15, 2013

Author Chat Friday with Karenna Colcroft on writing


In writing, a certain amount of stubbornness is necessary. Some may call it persistence, but I prefer saying stubborn because I feel it more that way. If that makes any sense.

You have to be stubborn to keep plugging away even when your stories are rejected by 
publishers, or when readers and reviewers slam a story you were proud of. If you let them get to you and give up, you aren’t going to get anywhere.

Sometimes stubbornness is needed to get through obstacles to your writing as well. I’ve been finding that a lot in the past several months. My personal life has often interfered with my attempts to write. It’s hard to be excited about writing romance when you’re trying to sort out problems with your spouse. It’s even harder to write about happy, positive things when you’re watching your teenager struggle with mental illness. 

And when your own physical and mental health worsens, it can be almost impossible to keep going. I have fibromyalgia and migraines, which sometimes causes me to be in so much pain I can barely think or move. I also have post-traumatic stress disorder from past abuse, and if something triggers me, it’s all I can do to hold myself together to get through the day, let alone actually write anything. And unfortunately, PTSD issues sometimes feed the fibromyalgia and migraines, which are aggravated by any type of stress.

But I am nothing if not stubborn, and although my writing has taken a back seat over the past few months to dealing with my personal life and my health, I have written. And I continue to write. My marriage is fine, for those who may have wondered, and now that my teenager has graduated and has turned eighteen and sees that her world hasn’t collapsed, she’s doing much better and doesn’t need as much of my support. The fibromyalgia, migraines, and PTSD continue to occasionally kick my ass, so I give myself permission to rest and relax when they kick in. 

I am writing, and I’m stubborn enough to keep doing it.

Inspiring, Karenna. I know, myself, there are things that I have to battle through to get to my writing. A few times I've almost given up, even after having made my debut back in January. Being an author isn't all glitz and glam as we like to think it is. But it is worth the battle to get the words on the pages when you get fan mail from readers telling you how much they loved your story. And it's worth it when you write The End for a particular set of characters, and can sit back in the satisfaction that you've been able to tell their tale. Stubbornness is one of the most valuable traits an author can have.