Wednesday, May 2, 2018

Grab a Hankie and Hold On! by Sandra Ardoin

A non-writing friend of mine posted a meme on my Facebook timeline: “Things That Make Writers Cry” from the Writers Write blog. I’d insert the meme here, but I’m too lazy to get permission, so go ahead and check it out. I’ll wait.

**Sandy whistles Player’s 70’s song “Baby, Come Back” while she’s waiting. Yes, she’s that old, but don’t mention it in the comments. The woman is sensitive.**

Ooh, baby, you came back!

So out of the nine items listed, some were humorous and some serious, right? However, they held a good bit of truth for those of us who struggle to get the appropriate words on the page and books into the possession of readers.

For instance, take number five: when the coffee/chocolate/wine is gone. Ha! My mornings run on coffee. When the pot is empty…well, it isn’t a pretty sight. And I always try to keep a stash of chocolate, though I’m stingier in doling it out to myself. Sitting all day and chocolate don’t combine for a pretty sight either, especially from the rear.

I’ve never fallen in love with a character I’ve had to kill off (number seven), though there have been a few I’ve wanted to shake until their fictional teeth rattled. My favorite times are those when I’ve written a scene that tightens my own throat. Since I’m a rare crier, it gives me the hope that more sensitive readers will bawl their eyes out. I guess I’m cruel that way.

Then there’s number one. How many times have I written brilliant prose one day and wanted to wad up my computer and toss it into the trash the next? That’s a rhetorical question, so don’t try it at home.

In my response to my friend, I said I could probably add a few things to the list, so let’s get to it.

10. Lately, I’ve noticed a number of one-star reviews on Amazon book pages that simply say “I haven’t read the book”.

**Here is where we ALL partake in a dumbfounded pause to let that sink in.**

Authors beg for reviews and appreciate each one, but common sense says read the book BEFORE posting the review.

11. There are times I’ve slogged my way to the halfway point in my book and it suddenly hits me…I still have TWICE that many words to write! Whether you’re a plotter or pantser, sometimes creating the story is like walking barefoot five miles in hot tar—uphill both ways. Our brains are tired. Our fingers ache. We just want to chuck writing the second half and go straight to the HEA. For writers, that HEA consists of two precious words: The End. Regrettably, if we gave in to our inclination, readers would chuck the book.

12. Time spent marketing our brilliant works. ** sigh ** I’m not talking about the effort of marketing itself, but the time it takes away from writing even more brilliant works. Yes, it’s necessary and, yes, we can’t ignore it, but we must also write additional stories.

13. Then there are those (hopefully few) royalty statements that….

**And here is where Sandy wisely shuts up.** 

Okay, I’ve put some of my tearful writer moments out there. Now share yours. Come on, baby, don’t be shy. Add to the list! And, if you’re a reader only, tell us what authors do to a story—good or bad—that makes you want to cry.


Sandra Ardoin engages readers with page-turning stories of love and faith. She’s the author of the heartwarming novella, The Yuletide Angel and the award-winning novel, A Reluctant Melody. Rarely out of reach of a book, she's also an armchair sports enthusiast, country music listener, and seldom says no to eating out. Visit her at Subscribe to receive updates and specials. Connect with her on Facebook, Twitter, Goodreads, Pinterest, and BookBub.