I take a short break from editing my current project to write this piece, because today has filled me with the growing sense of achievement I get from writing.
So, here’s where I am: I work full time in a busy career in the legal industry; I have an avid love of rugby; I’m in two bands; yet, aside from all that, I still find time to write. I started in 2014 and literally haven’t stopped. I have two “shelved” manuscripts; one fully finalised manuscript; and plenty of words of others in the pipeline, plus the current baby I’m working on.
As I work on trying to get my fully finalised one published – whether it’s formally, or through self-publishing – I work on my newest project. I wanted to share my journey, which has been long, and will continue for years to come because, basically, I love writing!
So, I have loads of ideas, and I’ve been creating worlds and writing things since I was a child. When I came to an impasse musically – my other major creative hobby – back in 2014, I realised I needed to take a break from writing music, and I delved in to writing my first manuscript. I finished it sometime in 2014, having tactically selected my “least favourite” story to write about as a pilot to see if I had the patience and ability to do it.
I came away with a sort of completed manuscript, and moved on you my other projects. My next was one I had been dreaming of writing since I was a child, but I found it hard to dedicate enough time to what will end up being an absolute epic. So, I sensibly moved on to a third project with some 50,000 words written of the second, and I finished the third rather unsatisfied. Some 95,000 words done of the third, where the story was all but concluded, save for the ending, I shelved it; not a knee-jerk reaction, I might add, but more because I realised it wasn’t the right time to try that project.
And so, I turned to my fourth – the one I call my first “proper” baby.
It’s done. It’s taken over a year of hardcore work and editing / proofing. It will be published, whether by official means, or self-publishing. I honestly don’t care which! It’s a contemporary supernatural, which is one heck of a saturated market. I know I can write, and the feedback I’ve had is exceptionally promising, but it’s not easy breaking in to writing, let alone with a story where the market is bursting at the seams. Nevertheless, it’s what I wanted to write, and I’m so proud I've done it.
As that particular project is in the long and arduous process of publishing, I am on to my next. I proudly completed the first draft of my fifth works this month having started it in August, although I left out a couple of concluding chapters which I want to write as part of my second redraft that I’m on now. As each second, minute, hour, day, month, and year passes of my writing journey, I realised I’ve found my true calling in life with it. I can immerse myself in my own vivid and wild imagination, and I can cherish the emotions I endure, and I love the characters and stories I create. There really is nothing quite like writing. It takes a lot of time, and you can say it’s a labour of love; but, to me, it’s more than that. It’s a labour of heartfelt desire and a way of life where I can escape in to my mind and bring forth the mountains of creativity I hold within.
Nowadays, there are loads of indie authors and amateur writers. Will I ever make it? I hope so. Do I care? You know what, in some ways, I don’t. I just want to write! And if just one person reads some self-published digital copy of any of my works, and tells me they love it, I will have achieved all I have ever wanted to achieve in writing. Then again, I love my own work, which I say with absolutely no ounce of self-righteousness at all. But, that being said, a mere single fan would be more than enough for me.
Which brings me on to the purpose of this blog. You see, I’ve spent this whole day on the redraft of my current project, and I’ve absolutely loved it. I wanted to share with you a simple message: if you love writing, just do it! When you have truly found the art of writing, you will understand the meaning of what I’m saying. Don’t give up – not for anyone else, but for your own sake. Just do it!
If you love writing – just write! The reciprocation you will feel in your own stories is all you need.
PS – and in a world of uncertainty and worry, it’s the escapism that can keep you sane! Trust me! It’s a lifetime work, and not a quick job. So, with that sentiment in mind: make it your life!
A space for ramblings, advice, news, press releases, and blogs that cover Mathisen's interests: rugby, politics, law, music...