Every writer knows that the cliché “writing can be lonely” is true. In the end, no matter how extroverted you are (and all writers are massive extroverts, right?), the work comes down to just you and a blank page.
Finding comrades-in-arms is important to a writer’s sanity and morale. Other writers help fuel your passion and empathize with your trials and triumphs like no one else can. Even the most supportive spouse doesn’t “get” why pacing problems in your novel make you pace, or why rogue commas chase you in your nightmares, or why having multiple voices in your head makes you “creative” rather than insane.
Understanding like that takes other writers.
I was lucky enough to find such comrades in 2006, when New York Times best-seller Jonathan Maberry started a workshop called the Advanced Writing Workshop. All the participants had completed one of his many Novel in Nine Months courses, and Advanced Writing was designed to help us through the often long and arduous process of polishing and publishing our work.
That Advanced Writing workshop (which still meets today) spawned The Author Chronicles. We have found mutual support and encouragement, helpful advice, and a lot of laughter on our journey so far. We hope to share what we have learned—and continue to learn—about the craft, business, and life of writing with you.
There’s something for everyone here. The five writers of The Author Chronicles write in different genres and are at different points along the writing-publishing continuum. All of us will introduce ourselves over the course of the next few weeks, but here we are in brief:
Kerry Gans (that’s me) writes middle grade and YA while running after her toddler daughter. Kerry is shopping her middle grade coming-of-age adventure novel, The Egyptian Enigma, while actively writing two more projects.
Nancy Keim Comley writes YA and middle grade novels while wrangling dogs, cats, bees, and children on her farm.
Matt Q. McGovern is wrestling his YA dark fantasy trilogy Goth Spirit into shape. He’s not ready to query yet, but sees the light at the end of the tunnel. Professionally a software developer, he spends his time working, writing, and playing the cello.
Gwendolyn Huber is restructuring her fantasy post-apocalyptic Gothic murder mystery, Blame it on the Moon, while also working on a YA novel, Not Extinct. Like Matt, she has not yet started the query process.
J. Thomas Ross is a poet, novelist, and short story writer. One of her poems, “Winter,” won a prize at the 2010 Philadelphia Writers’ Conference. J. Thomas is currently working on a future-time YA adventure/fantasy novel, Digger & Swat, as well as multiple short stories. Her short story “A Rock Is a Rock Is a Rock … Or Is It?” has just been published in the anthology Tales of Fortannis: A Bard’s Eye View, edited by Michael A. Ventrella.
As you can see, we cover a broad spectrum in both genre and experience, so we will have a lot to share as our journeys towards publication continues!
Up next: J. Thomas takes us inside Balticon and her book’s unofficial launch.