Then came the empty nest.
At first, I occupied my time with a full-time job to help put my kids through school, but a series of events made me realize my time on earth was limited. I knew if I was ever going to launch my dream of becoming a writer, the time was NOW!
So I changed from a full-time to part-time job, started studying every book on the craft of writing I could get my hands on, and joined a professional writer’s group. I also started my blog, WordVessel. Then in November of 2008, I linked up with other writers around the world to participate in NaNoWriMo.
No, NaNo is not a spin-off of the old Robin Williams TV show, Mork & Mindy.
NaNoWriMo stands for National Novel Writing Month. Writers set up an online account and during the month of November push themselves to the limits to complete a 50,000 word novel. It’s not as hard as you might think. It equals out to 1,667 words per day. (The website is www.nanowrimo.org if you’re interested.)
The hard part comes afterwards. I had to learn how to turn my smelly first draft into a real book. I worked on it in January and February of 2009 (think sculptor chipping away at a block of marble). I submitted the manuscript to an editor and a contest in March.
The editor said “no thanks” with a very nice letter explaining what they felt needed to be improved and a request to submit future works to them. The contest people called to tell me that my novel, Texas Roads, had placed in the top five in a field of seventy-five. I got carpet burns on my chin when it hit the floor!
Now it’s time for NaNoWriMo 2009, and, you guessed it…I’ll be plugging away at novel number two!
A Texas gal through and through, Cathy Bryant continues to follow her writing dream. You can follow her progress at www.CatBryant.com. She also invites you to visit her blog, WordVessel ) where she hosts book giveaways, writes book reviews, and interviews authors.
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