And the Year Ends and I’m Still Writing

The year is ending on a good note. Not that there’s any great news to report—I have no news, actually, I am utterly and entirely between bouts of news, since this is a quiet period of simply working hard and writing—but I’m ending the year with the knowledge that I’ve found it again. It­-it. My love of writing.

After a tough grumble of a year, most of which occurred behind the curtain, a year that included a faceoff with writer’s block the likes of which I’ve never had before (and, honestly, I never before truly believed “writer’s block” existed) and such a furnace of doubt raging inside me I’m surprised my hair didn’t catch fire, I have it back. The pleasure in writing again. That’s why I’m here in the first place. It’s all because writing—the act itself—brought me such great pleasure all those years ago before publication was even a possibility and I wanted to find a way to continue to do it for the rest of my life. With 2011’s writing struggles and hiccupping sense of inspiration, I found myself holding this small, urgent question inside me for a long time: Do I really want to be an author, now that I know what it’s like? Which led to another more urgent question: What am I if I don’t write? Which led to an answer: I can’t not write. Which circled back to tell me: I have to write because I love it, and I’ll always write books, no matter what.

It seems so obvious now.

So the end of the year is here, and I pulled through, and I’m in a wonderful place, revising 17 & Gone thanks to my editor, and tweaking my new book proposal for what could be my next YA novel thanks to my agent, and simply feeling better in general thanks to the generous people in my life (hi, Mom! hi, E!). All is well. My writing is going well, and I love that feeling.

If you’ve been struggling, I hope it passes. I hope you look back in your rearview once we speed ahead into this new year and see your struggles are long gone.

Happy New Year, writers and creative people! May we make good things in 2012.

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