The most amazing thing just happened...and I can't talk about it. I probably won't be able to talk about it for years, and you will probably hate me for not telling you now what it is. I'm writing about it here for several reasons. One, I will have a point of reference in the future, a written record to refer to. Two, I'm dying to share this with you, because you are my everything, so I'm doing it partially, by not disclosing facts but sharing emotion. And three, because I need to see it written to believe it.
My writing, the very reason I write, the drive, the urge I have gnawing at me every day, this insatiable force that makes me write like crazy, all of it got validated today.
I have heard what I was hoping to hear, I have reached whom I wanted to reach. Please don't guess. For reasons that are beyond my control, and to preserve a very delicate bridge into a place I didn't dare to achieve, I have to keep mum.
One day I'll be able to tell you.
One more thing happened today. Because of what you have read above, my drive—if at all possible—has doubled. If you've seen me cranking out books like cakes, you haven't seen shit. Prepare for a storm.
A couple important turning points.
If you have been following me from the very first post of this blog, which was about three years ago, you know that I have mostly been talking about writing, rarely about anything personal. I used to spew personal things on Facebook, then on Twitter (I was very active there until about a few months ago), and on places like Instagram and Google+ and Pinterest and Joe's bathtub. Okay, there is no such thing as Joe's bathtub, but the equivalent of me spreading myself thin probably comes close to stumbling into someone's tub and waving myself to and fro in an effort to get attention.
Having been deprived of attention growing up, I tried to compensate for it. Until I rammed my head into a ceiling. You probably remember about me blogging on some kind of a block, something that was holding me back from some turning point.
I think I got what it is today. I can feel it, not explain it yet, but feeling is enough.
Changes are coming.
Ever read those bios of writers where they are called "prolific"? In other words, can't shut up? That's me. The reason I tweeted so much was to find some kind of an outlet to my thoughts. I have abandoned this practice to focus more on pouring these short 140 characters snippets into longer pieces. I will blog more, and it will be not just about my writing but also about my life, as I understood that unless I have a place to talk about it, I go nuts. I hold myself back. I'm afraid to overwhelm people because that is what I have been told my whole life.
I was too much.
And I was scolded for it.
No more holding back.
This is my blog and my space, and it's about me. If I will lose you as a subscriber, I totally get it. I've been losing people lately both here and on Twitter for the same reason, but I've been also gaining new people here and on Ello, and it's the people who want more of this new me.
No hard feelings. If this is too much, drop me. But expect to see daily posts. For the moment I'm using Ello to vent, but some of my thoughts are so long, they would be better off here.
There will be more short stories. I have started a collection of short stories and have been adding stuff there as my mood struck me to write something, but will now make a concentrated effort to pour my energy there. Because it has to go somewhere.
My boyfriend offered to come to the next convention with me dressed in a pink tutu, tights and leotard and all!!! See, I told you this post is random. Expect pictures and hilariousness.
I have understood that suppressing my emotions is what causes me anxiety. I can't suppress them. They need an outlet, hence, more writing here about anything emotional that bursts out of me, like the excitement I'm feeling right now. You see, if I won't write it out, I won't be able to quiet my brain and sleep, and as I'm typing this it's already almost 1 a.m., and lack of sleep is really getting to me. I write poorly when I'm tired.
My block has been the darkness inside me. I have lived through such a mess that at first I was spilling it left and right to get rid of it. It was my therapy. My books were dark because they were my therapy. They're still therapy, but there isn't much darkness left. People flock to positivity. Many people initially flocked to me when I was new and interesting and shiny—some of you actually asked me about the change, seeking an answer—but then recoiled at seeing how much of it I had. The reason Rosehead is doing so well is because it's positive. It gives something to root for, and it has a happy ending. I want to spread more light and less darkness. I've been using you, my readers, for my therapy, hanging my darkness on your shoulders. It's a hard job. It's tiring. Some of you couldn't bear it, it was too much. For those of you who are still with me, thank you. You pulled me out. You helped me see what I saw today. The result will be happier books.
Don't worry, horror lovers. I will still write dark stuff, but I'll be aware of the burden it will impose and of the hope I have to give you to compensate for it. This is why Stephen King is so popular. He knows when to rekindle your hope, he knows how to stretch it to a hair and still have you on the leash, groping for that carrot. I didn't see it until today. I see it now.
Get ready for more books.
When I feel an intense emotion, I have to capture it right away. if I don't, if I suppress it and save it for later, when I do finally sit down to write, it's not as good. Being raised in Russia I was bred to suppress emotions. It's part of who I am. I'm shedding that part now. And I'm learning that when I feel stuff, I better write it out right that moment, to keep it fresh and real. That is why I write my first drafts so fast, to keep in that mode of constant emotion, to keep the story alive. For that reason I will be blogging it all out when I feel it, or writing more short stories.
I worked hard to try to be funny and clever on purpose, on Twitter especially. I would prepare the tweets in advance, I would obsess over them. I would feel devastated if I saw someone tweet something funnier than me. It would plunge me into anxiety that I would battle and battle and lose. No more of this bullshit. I don't have to be funny or clever. All I have to do is be me. People sense it when I'm fake. And that is the pitfall of all social media. I notice it's almost like a competition—who will say smarter shit? It's pointless, and it certainly doesn't get you to do more writing, which is my goal. So out the window with it. Fucking defenestrate, you stupid habit!
The freedom I glimpsed today is tremendous, overwhelming. It's like I've had a religious experience, you know, got struck by lightning and saw baby Jesus bless my pink tutu. I can't comprehend the implications of this yet, but I can guarantee you that if you write and read your ass off like I did for the last three years, you will experience something along these lines.
There is a simple formula every student goes through—by "student" I mean anyone who studies anything.
- I don't know that I don't know.
- I know that I don't know.
- I don't know that I know.
- I know that I know.
I have breached the barrier to the last stage. I have poked my head up and witnessed what it's like knowing that I can write. I will slide back. It's inevitable. It will take me years to root myself in this knowledge, but I'm close.
All I need to do now is polish my craft. And I will. I will write like I'm on steroids. I will get to the level of writing I want, and that is the level of Stephen King and J.K. Rowling and Haruki Murakami and Chuck Palahniuk and Tove Jansson and Terry Pratchett and Alice Walker and many more. Hey, I'm practically related to Nabokov. We're both Russian.
Don't believe me?