I’m a happy, hopeful, and grateful man as I sit outside at about 9:45 PM, watching what appears to me to be a full moon ascend. It is silohuetting a redwood tree that is perhaps seventy-five feet tall. I’m smiling at the sight while crickets serenade me in the pleasantly cool evening air.
On a table in front of me my laptop screen glows. I’ve just finished typing a climactic part of my fiction story, It Was Her Eyes. It is now 10,363 words. To my understanding that makes it my first novelette-length story. It is not yet finished. I have quite a number of chapters to go.
At this point, I believe it will end up growing into my first novella at between 17,500 and 40,000 words, though it is unlikely to become a 40,000+ word novel. I’m satisfied by what it is and what it is becoming. Actually, I’m more than satisfied. I’m downright proud of it.
I look forward to the day I can share my finished story with the world. Until then, my story and I will grow together, and my characters will keep teaching me about the world and about myself, as I bring each of them to life, experiencing along with them as they grow, love, bleed, suffer, struggle, hope, dream, doubt, overcome, fear, celebrate, and sadly, sometimes die. I die a little when one of the protagonists dies. That is also true when I finish a story or book. A part of me has ended. Only readers breathe new life into what would otherwise merely become lonely words on a page or screen.
One day, I will send this story and the characters that inhabit it out into the world, and hope they can touch, inspire, and entertain others, making readers feel a closer connection to their own hearts, hopes, desires, and dreams.
I expect much from my beloved characters and trust that if every word is written from my heart that they will be up to the task of touching the hearts of others.