I Wrote Nothing Substantial Before My 20’s
So I was one of those kids who really loved writing. My favourite class was always “Writer’s craft” and I’d usually go above and beyond the assignments, writing extra stories on my free time. I wasn’t as strong in other subjects, but thankfully most of my teachers really encouraged me to tap into my writing. Most thought I’d be a naturalist or journalist one day. I may have had the makings of a prodigy writer, but something was missing. I could never write anything longer than a few chapters. Though I always loved writing shorter works, I didn’t actually *finish* any longer stories through my childhood and teenage years.
The Turning Point
In my early 20’s I dabbled with an epic fantasy, but only got a few chapters in. It’s like there was always something hindering my story’s progression. Once I tried writing a historical fiction novel and stopped, saying “I don’t have enough life experience” and I deleted the whole thing. I even went with a children’s story idea about prairie dogs, and while it was a lot of fun, that didn’t seem right for me either. It’s like I wanted to write something grand, but didn’t know how.
I started getting into books in the thriller and fantasy genres. I read a series by Wayne Thomas Batson called “The Door Within” and it’s like the barriers in my mind finally broke down and I became more inspired to write my first novel than ever before. Everything in that series spoke to me – the characters, the plot, the fantasy elements, the villain, the redemption story. I had to write something like that for myself! I was also listening to epic music at the time – Red, Demon Hunter, Haste The Day, Flyleaf. I was graduating from college soon and would have a few weeks off before looking for a job in my field, so it was the perfect time to start writing seriously.
Writing My Very First Novel Draft
I actually wrote an outline (A good idea if it’s your very first novel) before starting my book and it helped me a lot. Once I had the framework down, I blasted all that good music and wrote away. I finished the first draft within a month since I had the time and the means to write all day (I’m still very grateful for that chance).
The Right Time To Write
As you can see, my real writing journey didn’t start super early though I was still on the young side (The average age of a first time author is 40.) Of course, you can start writing at any age whether that’s 5 or 105. I personally felt like I didn’t have enough life experience in my younger years to write a novel – it was like a needed a bridge between the vivid fantasies and the inspiration to put them into a full story. By 27, I was ready, and it was such a wonderful experience having finished a work I was proud of. It was surreal having written a fantasy book of my own.
The Elements That Helped Push Me Over The Edge To Start Writing
To recap, here are the things that pushed me over the edge from wanting to write a novel to actually writing it:
*Epic music that inspired a lot of emotions and themes
*Time to write (I was graduating which allowed to take some time to write before looking for jobs)
*I read a story that hit all the right notes in my psyche
*I gained enough life experience by that point which gave me the confidence to write something longer
*I was running a lot at the gym (This is a great way to think up some awesome ideas while feeling powerful)
Listening to Red during this time period would have inspired anyone to do something amazing to be fair! Check it out (This was the theme song of my book!). ❤
What Happened After I Wrote My First Book
Once that first book was finished, I couldn’t stop writing. As you may know, I’ve published 16 books in total (and have written even more than that). The hardest part for me was getting started, but once I got started I couldn’t stop! It was like a river of inspiration had broken through.
Have You Written A Book Before?
If you haven’t written your first book yet or you’re currently writing it, I hope this inspired you to keep going. Sometimes it takes all the right elements to finally push you over the edge and just write. If you’ve written a few books like me, I hope you enjoyed reading about my writing background. The amazing mysticism and inspiration I felt back then is still with me now, and it feels like a dream whenever I look back and remember the process of writing my first novel. I’m sure you can relate to that feeling if you’ve written at least one book.
What was my first book?
It’s called By The Sword. I admit it’s in the religious fantasy category. My beliefs have since changed, but I have kept it because I’m still proud of the story. It represents a part of me and maybe one day I’ll go back and read it. It would be something to read my first book 13 years later after writing so many other ones and experiencing a great deal more of life as well. It’s very reflective of Christian fantasy and fits a lot of the tropes, but I also feel it has its very own surreal Sara spin. 😛
You can purchase By The Sword here. It’s only available in print at this time. I admit the cover isn’t the most eye-catching and there’s a reason for that. I didn’t like the original design after it had been out for a while, so I changed it to something simpler. Maybe one day I’ll update it! 🙂
Thank you for stopping by today. ❤