A friend of mine, another talented creative, shared this on Instagram, and I was immediately drawn to it. I have been riddled with guilt, frustration, envy and self pity for years as I shelved my writing since my son was born in 2018. My last title Depths of Deceit was published a few months after he was born. I just didn’t have time, energy or motivation to sit down and write another story, let alone market my older titles. I tried to convince myself I would get back into it, like riding a bike.
I used to write and publish 3 books a year. As time went on, my ferocious love for the written word slowly dimmed. My time was spent more with my family and focusing on my career. I believed my biggest motivator for staying away from the industry was my lack of book sales and the competition. It seemed everyone was releasing books and making money.
Since I stepped away from the publishing world, I noticed, with blaring naivety, that the industry had changed. The reader had changed. What worked for me three years ago, doesn’t work now. I still have novels published, available for sale, but my effort to be seen among the masses is difficult. A drop in the ocean, if you will.
I just stopped trying. By then I was focusing on my family and career. Then lockdown hit in Sydney in June 2021. I was at home with my young children seven days a week, never leaving the house. I saw it as a wonderful opportunity to reignite my writing. After Depths of Deceit, I started writing a novel set in Guernsey. I’ve been sitting on it now for 4 years, the longest break I’ve ever had in my author career. Lockdown gave me some time to go back over it, edit and rethink. I had severe writer’s block and it hindered my passion.
I’ve always been a creative person. I used to love to draw and paint as a kid. But putting words on a page, telling a story was something more profound to me. It was my lifeblood. So seeing this post, after digging up my old MS, uncovered so much for me. I am still an author. I am still creative. I may have put my love for it aside to focus on raising my kids, but it never goes away. Book ideas and character motivations are constantly living in the back of my mind, just tucked into a box without a lid.
So if you’re in the same boat as me, trying to make it by in this crazy world, your art is never gone. Your love for it never wanes. It just sits on the sidelines until you’re ready to pick it up again. Don’t give up.