Somehow I know that what I'm about to say will resonate with most of you. Profoundly resonate, even.
It's this: The writer's journey, despite a posse of supportive friends and family, is lonely in a way only creative people can attest to--UNTIL YOU FIND A KINDRED SPIRIT. Someone who bleeds stories the way you do, who is walking the journey in a similar place, and who UNDERSTANDS because he is LIVING IT.
That's not such a new concept, really. Any journey in life has its peculiarities to which only fellow sojourners will relate. But there's something about the WOW of having someone speak your language, feel your pain, understand every tiny thing about the writing process that warrants special consideration.
Well, of course I would say that. I'm a writer.
I'm blessed to have found such a kindred spirit, someone whose writing I love, whose opinion I value, whose sense of humor is wonderfully dry and warped and just the thing to make me smile when I need to. Someone whose cynicism at having been rejected eight million times rivals my own. Someone who, regardless of the rejection, presses passionately on.
Mind you, I have other writerly friends, friends who have spoken important and irreplaceable things into my life; friends who share the joyful angst (oh yes, that's what it is) and understand much of what I may babble on about. (I'm absolutely certain that you're ignoring my prepositions-at-the-end-of-sentences, so for the sake of getting this blog post finished, I'm pressing on.)
But when the journey-process-attitude-humor-outlook-goals all line up, to the point where divergence is minimal? Well, that's an immeasurable gift.
That's not to say I'm giving as much as I'm receiving. We are not always to others what they are to us. I'm hopeful, of course, that this is a two-way street, not a throw-the-bum-a-buck-and-pass-by situation.
At any rate, just knowing that those words of oh-honey-I-have-SO-been-there are just a chat box away has been a tremendous source of encouragement as I plough through what has turned out to be the most painstaking and difficult revision process of my life. (No, I'm not being melodramatic. It's really been that hard.)
So to my Kindred Spirit who Didn't Know You Were: Thank you.
And to the rest of you: You are also an irreplaceable part of my Writer Life. I've written countless times how this community has blessed me, enriched my life. That remains true, and I expect that it will continue to be so.
Oh, and the novel? The one that's killing me even as it produces life (in itself and in me)? I'm pressing through until it's done. Don't let me forget that I've told you that. I need the accountability.
I really do.