May 31, 2019
THE SIGNIFICANCE OF OTHERS
Unless your writing life is entirely hermitic, you likely have someone you can turn to for help and support. It may be a friend, a family member, an agent, editor, publisher, or a fellow writer. It must be someone you trust. In my case, my wife is critically important to the creation of my novels. I simply could not write or publish without her, she brings so many talents to the process.
From the moment and idea for a story takes root in my brain (which I then immediately discuss with her) she is intimately involved, offering thoughts and comments and ideas, some of which may get incorporated into the work. She has a well-developed imagination, and we have had many productive “what if” discussions. What if a character did this or that, what if the plot took this twist or that turn, what if I helped out more around the house? But I digress.
I will often read aloud to her the results of a day’s work. This has value because of her reactions to what I’ve written (as a future reader might react) and because hearing the words offers a different perspective on the examination of what I’ve done.
I write cursively (in a notebook with a fountain pen for anyone interested in that level of detail). I am a hopelessly inaccurate one finger hunt-and-pecker on a keyboard, but my wife claims she actually enjoys typing and I am keen to believe her. Could there be any happier coincidence?
After months of scratching away at the typed manuscript she enters the corrections and helps me to proofread the result. I abhor proofreading so any help I can get makes me happier than cancelling a visit to the dentist. When the manuscript is as clean as we can make it, she formats it for independent publication (uploading to Amazon, Kindle, etc.). She also designs the covers from scratch and does a beautiful and completely professional job. She tends to the promotion of the books on various websites and on social media.
All of these tasks she performs willingly and with great diligence. Everything she does involves the use of computers which I confess are beyond my near-Luddite levels of expertise. I can manage an email account and search for information on the internet, but my technological skills are then exhausted. If any thing goes wrong I’m left staring at my laptop with a crazed, near homicidal look on my face, and whining, “Honee…”
The most important and valuable thing she does for me is to provide moral and spiritual support. She believes in me and in what I write, and that is priceless.
This is Jenine, the lady in question.