Monday, October 31, 2011

Can I Claim a Second Birthday?

My birthday was a few days ago. I'm a year older! Hooray! However, today, Halloween, is a different kind of birthday for me.

On October 31st, 2009, I became a writer. Some of you know this about me. I've talked about it a few times. Before 10/31/2009, I'd pretty much never written creatively, apart from assignments in literature courses in high school and college. I didn't write for fun. I'd never journaled or written poetry. I never considered myself an overly creative person.

But quite suddenly, two years ago, I decided to write a book. The idea had been churning in my mind for a little while, both the idea of writing a book and the idea for the story I wanted to tell. I was intrigued by the challenge of writing a novel. And on 10/31/2009, I started doing it.

It was the most all-consuming, startling experience I've ever had. I didn't do it for NaNoWriMo or anything, but by the end of November 2009, I had completed a 98k-word novel.

I was as surprised as everyone else who knew me. My parents were frankly stunned. My husband was entirely perplexed. My friends were quizzically amused. It was so out of character for me.

That's how it all started for me. At first, I was pretty much convinced it was a one-time thing, but the passion for it only grew. I couldn't rid my system of it, and every other part of me--and my life--has been trying to adjust ever since. Now we're two years down the road, and although I supposed my drive to write could die, it doesn't show any signs of doing so. I'm a writer now. It's part of who I am.

Do YOU have a writing birthday, or a moment to which you can connect your "birth" as a writer? Or has your journey been one of gradual evolution rather than a Big Bang?

*note: I'm without power AGAIN, thanks to the freakish October snow storm, and may not be back this week, since they're saying we won't have light or HEAT until 11/3. I'll try to get around to blogs to comment as best I can!*

21 comments:

  1. Awesome way to look at it!! I guess my writing b-day would be December 2008! Woo hoo and CHEERS, lady!!

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  2. I'm not sure when my writing b-day would be. But once I was laid off from my job (still doing a happy dance over that one), I knew it was time to pursue my long time dream of being a writer. I didn't write fiction right away. But once I started, there was no turning back. :D

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  3. Happy writing b-day to you!

    My writing b-day is sometime in elementary school - I've wanted to be a writer as long as I can remember and still have all my old stories squirreled away. So much fun to read - especially the ones I wrote in my angsty teen years!!

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  4. Happy anniversary! I've been writing, off and on, since I was twelve, so no dates for me. That's tooooooo long ago! :-)

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  5. My writing birthday, when it comes to writing novels, is June 2009. Just before you! Like you, it was an all-consuming passion that never let go.

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  6. You wrote a 100K book in a month?! Seriously, that is some crazy writing! Congratulations. I think my writing birthday was somewhere in 2006. I started on my first novel. Didn't finish it until 2008, but only because we moved.

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  7. Happy birthday! ;)

    Eep, we lost power too, but only for a few hours. *hugs*

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  8. oh, goodness! Sorry to hear you're snowed in! Bleah! As for my writing birthday, it happened a little before yours--around September. But by the end of the year, I'd written two books! And you're so right. The love of doing it only grew. Here's to writing! And Happy Halloween!!! :o) <3

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  9. Oh, no, that terrible storm! Fingers crossed you get power back sooner than the 3rd!! Happy writing birthday--I love that story! It is amazing, and yes, you are most definitely a writer.

    Interesting that you used the concept of birth several times in your description. Writing has always been connected to the birth process for me. My first novel took me exactly nine months to write (first draft), and the same held true for the second. My actual writing birthday happened in response to what felt like a personal tragedy--the loss of a birth-to-be through miscarriage. Writing was what pulled me out of the ensuing depression, and nine months later I had the beginning of a new life for myself as a writer. (I'd never written seriously before that.)

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  10. Congrats!!! *blows horn and throws confetti* I don't have a specific date, though it was just a couple of months before you. But it certainly momentous. For me anyway!

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  11. Happy Birthday, times two!

    I write like a WriMo too, but the first time around I didn't do enough planning. I was a pantser all the way through to 90K. That was February of '09. This time around I'm doing NaNoWriMo, with a much better idea of where I should be going.

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  12. Happy second birthday! Wow, has it really been two years?

    My writer birthday passed over the summer--June to be exact (not sure of the day, though). That was my two year mark.

    CONGRATS to us!

    ~JD

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  13. Happy Writing Birthday - and more power to your typing fingers:-)

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  14. I can't remember the specific date, but I do remember that I started writing my first ever novel back when I was pregnant with my 2nd kid. It was cathartic and euphoric. I think it kept my mind off the woes and aches of pregnancy. I wrote 122K words in 2 months. Crazy, and of course, totally unpublishable 122K but at that time, it kept me sane. I've been writing since.

    Happy writing birthday!

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  15. Happy birthday, birthday to you! 98K words in a mohth? They must have been backed up for a while. Me? I started writing poetry at age 10

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  16. Yes, happy writing birthday for yesterday. And what is it with the weather gods in your neck of the woods this year?!

    I don't remember an actual "writing birthday date", but I've wanted to be a writer ever since my first publication in the school magazine in 4th grade (nearly 40 years ago now!)

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  17. Happy birthday. . .er, days. :) I've always wanted to write. My first attempt was when I was 9 and enthralled with Nancy Drew. My book was called Mystery of the Glass Chandelier and I never got past the title. But it was enough to give me the bug!

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  18. hi miss sarah! yikes! sorry you dont got any lights or heat.ack! i hope you get it back on real fast. happy for real birthday and happy writers birthday. it just real cool you could know that exact start date for your writing. for me its just a little before i got blogging and its cause i was real sick and feeling down and one of my doctors said maybe it could be a help writing stuff down and i did and then i did my first story and loved doing it.
    ...happy birthday hugs from lenny

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  19. I missed this while at WFC, but I'll say it now: Happy Birthday, Sarah!

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  20. Very cool.

    It was kind of the same way for me: I'd always assumed I could write, but I'd never done it.

    Then one day a few years back, I sat down and started typing, not realizing I was about to do a full-length novel.

    Weird.

    My social life has dropped off a lot since that day...

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