The other day, I was talking to some people at a craft fair when a pretty young woman heard one of the others mention that I am a writer. She waited till the conversation was over, till I'd been stung by a woman saying, "Oh, yes, I read those when I was about twelve," when I said I wrote for Harlequin. At least, I thought, she didn't ask when I was going to write a real book. Or where the restroom was. I suppose that would have come later.
But I regress. When the conversation ended, the young woman--her name is Whitney--introduced herself and asked about writing and we talked a little bit. She reads "everything," the best kind of reader there is. She was pretty, bright, and interesting. It was fun talking to her. She said someday she wanted to write a book. And someday, when she had time, she was going to write.
Which led to me giving advice she didn't ask for. Not that I'm a stranger to doing that, but just this one time, I was right to do it.
"Whitney," I said, calling her by name beause I love her name, "don't wait until you have time."
And I know, really I do, that I'm not the first person who ever gave that advice, but it is undoubtedly the best advice I ever gave.
I went on to tell her that I'd written my first three books sitting on bleachers. That was, in truth an
Just last week I waxed pompous to Wrangler Margie, telling her I didn't know how I'd managed writing books and working fulltime all at once. I still don't know, but I do know this. I never had time, so I guess I made time. Thank goodness for coilbound notebooks and pens that write well.
So, to Whitney, and to any other young writers out there, that's my best piece of advice: make time. My second-best is, when you meet a veteran writer, walk right up and talk to her the way you did to me. It makes our day.
And, from the veteran writers who are visiting us today, what's your best piece of advice? And leave us a link to your newest book while you're here--we were all readers first. Good ones like Whitney, who read everything.
To the people of Paris, our hearts and our prayers are with you.