This morning someone launched fireworks in my ear to wake me up and I sat up and realized; NEW YEAR.
GUYS WHAT IS TIME. WHERE HAS IT GONE WHERE WILL IT GO, INTO A VOID OF FOOD AND WRITING AND BREATHING AND SLEEPING AND BILLS AND POOPING? YES. I AM TWENTY-TWO. WHAT DOES IT ALL MEAN. CAN IT HAVE ANY MEANING AT ALLOHMYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYGOOOOOOOOOODDDDDDDDDD.
As I was calmly considering the meaning of time and the universe, I hit my cranium on the headboard and it jostled my thoughts about into a more acceptable frame of mind i.e. Not Insane.
2012 has been an incredible year.
I wrote three books. One of them got me represented by a fantastic agent who supports me and guides me in all the right ways. May 11th, my agent called me out of the blue and offered rep. The rest is history.
By June, we were on sub.
I am lucky and incredibly lucky and so freaking lucky and grateful that my submission time was relatively painless. I missed a whole world of horrible anguish. I got my share of kind rejections and static silence, and through it all my writing friends supported me.
Sometimes, before I became represented, I woke up with stress nightmares. Querying for three years took its toll, and only after I'd signed with my agent did the nightmares stop. My faith in myself, my work, and my agent became a driving force in my life. If the book got picked up, great. If it didn't, okay, fine, I can write an even better one! Just knowing there was someone in my corner (Hi Jessica!!) gave me the confidence to forge forward. And that's true to this day.
August 25th, Jessica let me know we had an offer. From a fantastic, mind-blowingly awesome editor and house.
I can't describe the moment. I should be able to, since I'm a writer. The closest thing I've got is the feeling you have when the roller coaster goes down too fast and your stomach lifts off your intestines and the little hollow floods with suspense. And then the coaster sits flat and everything gets back in place and you're so grateful for it, for feeling full and right again.
I talked to Sharyn and I knew. I knew the book belonged to her, and us, but most of all she got it. PRETENDING TO BE ERICA had not only found a good home, but the right home.
I did a lot of silly crying.
Because feeling right, seeing things become right, that's the best feeling in the world.
A few days after that I turned twenty-two and halloween and thanksgiving and christmas. I was a judge in PitchWars and got to read so many amazing manuscripts. I went on my first blind date (!!!), which is insane because I hate dates and am ridiculously shy, but hey, I DID IT. I became friends with lots more writers. I saw writer friends become better and faster and happier and sadder. The world gets so big the less you see, gets so small the more you see, and it's pretty and momentary but always there under the surface, like a tidepool.
When there's a lot of water, a lot of things, we can't see it. When there's a little water, we can see.
And now New Years.
I think most of all, what I learned this year is that living is scary. But fun.
Most of all, I learned that dreams really do come true. I was a cynic and I still am but holy shit. Life schooled me this year. It slapped me in the face and said "how dare you underestimate me". And that's made this year my best one so far.
I can do anything!
So can you!
Isn't that scary.
It's not about the journey, or the end. It's not about who you are or who you'll become. It's about finding what makes you happy. Happiest. And going for it really hard. All or nothing.
Because right now, you are all. And you are nothing.
Thank you. yes. you.
If you're scared, hold my hand. I'll be here for you if you need it.