Afternoon Kindle-ites! Today’s post (a very sweet one if I do say so myself) comes from my Twitter buddy Jarrett Rush. Jarret lives outside of Dallas with his wife, Gina, and their overly energetic chocolate Lab, Molly. His novella, Chasing Filthy Lucre, has been described as “a little dystopian, a little cyberpunk, a little noir, … entirely thrilling.” And can be found (in ebook format) at Amazon (HERE), Barnes and Noble (HERE), and Smashwords.com (HERE). If you would like to get to know Jarrett better, (or read some of his flash fiction) he blogs over at http://jarrettwrites.blogspot.com. If that’s not enough you can cyber-stalk him on Twitter at @JarrettRush.
Today is my wife’s birthday. I don’t tell you that so you’ll all wish her a happy birthday in the comments, although I know she’d appreciate that. She turns 33 today. I’ve known her for six of those years and been married to her for three of them. A friend introduced us, and on the night that Gina and I really got to know each other I told her something that I’d never told anyone who wasn’t an immediate family member. She asked me what I did for fun, and I told her I was a writer. It was a big step for me. Up until that point, “writer” was a badge that I wore under my clothes. I never let others know that at night I’d sit behind my keyboard and bang away at stories.
Telling Gina, though, helped me. Once she knew I wanted to write, she encouraged me. She pushed me. She motivated me.
If you look at the dedication of my book, Chasing Filthy Lucre, you’ll see it’s to Gina. Not a surprise, she’s my wife afterall. It reads like this:
She helps me get there and back again. This wouldn’t have been possible without her pushing me to do it then supporting me every step of the way.
The first line is an inside joke between the two of us, but the rest of the dedication is completely serious. Without her support I wouldn’t have been able to submit short stories to different publications. Without her support I wouldn’t have worked on my writing and gotten it to the point that some of those publications would actually choose to publish what I’d submitted. And without her support, I wouldn’t have been able to finish my book and put it up for sale.
I’m not writing this to tell you how great Gina is, even though she is great. I’m writing this to encourage you to find authors you like and to support them. Writing is a pretty solitary business. You do it by yourself — just you and the keyboard. Even if you’re writing in public somewhere it’s very easy to get lost in your own head. Knowing that there is someone out there who likes what you’re doing and believes in you can make all the difference between hanging up your laptop or pushing through when the writing gets tough.
Support can mean lots of different things. It can be an encouraging or complimentary email. It can be a review of the writer’s recent work. It can be telling friends about this wonderful book you’ve found. It doesn’t matter so much what you do, but that you do it. Because just knowing there is someone out there who wants you to succeed and believes that you can makes all the difference in the world. Believe me, I know.
Happy birthday, Gina.