February 7, 2014

No One Has to Know

By Kay Dew Shostak 

We were playing a game last Thanksgiving and my mother was trying to get her team to say the word on the card she hid in her hand. "What Kay does a lot of!" she shouted. Her team, made up of other family members, shouted back, "Write!"

It's doubtful any of those gathered there have ever seen me write. I'm a little too easily distracted by other people, so I write behind closed doors.

And there is no shelf of books to point to as proof that I write. Alas, (best part of being a writer, you can use the word "Alas") they are in my computer and not easily on view for pointing to.

So how did they all know I write? Because I opened my big mouth years ago. Yep, my fault completely. Even crazier? I put it in Facebook posts for the whole world to see.

However, a new temptation appeared when my husband and I moved two years ago. My writing world was falling apart. My agent had just up and quit and then I found out she'd been lying to me. Temptation was strong to leave all that writing nonsense behind me. No one in our new home even had to know.

No one asking if I was published? Or where could they buy my book? Or giving me that pitiful look. You know that pitiful look. Pitiful looks are not my favorite.

So I hid out for a while. Crying, eating, and wallowing, anything but writing or talking about writing. Misery and I hung out for months and we liked each other. BFF's.
But then one day I started laughing again. Laughing at my wallowing, crying self.

Laughing is not misery's favorite, so misery and I began sitting at different lunch tables. And with less crying and wallowing to fill my days, I ended up writing. Like the captain going down with the ship, I decided I'd rather go down writing, than crying about writing.

And I realized the only way to get the awful questions out of my head was to get them back out into the public. Sure, the questions can be painful when you aren't published, but they aren't as painful as when all those doubts and fears are locked up and have free reign to roam around inside your head. So, go ahead, open yourself up for the questions, the pitiful looks, and even the rolling eyes (for those of you with teens). Put words down on paper and decide to continue typing even as the ship sinks.

You're a writer. And everyone might as well know it.
Kay writes about people finding themselves where they didn't plan on being. Whether it's a small town in the Georgia mountains, a deserted subdivision on a Florida island, or running a B&B for railroad fans. She and her husband raised three kids moving around the country. During those travels Kay had several stories published in compilations and worked as a journalist. Kay loves writing and living (and looking for good news from her agent) in Fernandina Beach, Florida. Look her up at Kay Dew Shostak on Facebook and Twitter.

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