Earlier this month while my husband was cleaning out an old file cabinet in our garden shed, he found a drawer full of my old manuscripts. Digging through them, I discovered at least a half-dozen stories dating from back in the days when editors and agents wanted actual pages banged out from typewriters. We’re talking 120,000 or more words each. I don’t even remember some of these lost “gems,” but glancing at the opening pages, I’m sure they were awful (or hysterical, depending on your perspective!). Back then, I was on my own for the most part. I didn’t have critique partners or know anyone who could help me get published. Not knowing anything about my craft, I wrote because I simply had to.
I used every scrap of paper I could get my hands on so I could jot down ideas and scenes. I still do. Only now instead of napkins, I’m using my smartphone.
Even after being published, I’ve never written anything that I thought was perfect. I still cringe at the sight of my writing, wondering what I could’ve done to make it better. But just like every other skill, writing takes practice and hard work. Looking at all those abandoned manuscripts, I know I’ll never quit. I’ll never run out of stories to tell, but hopefully, with each egg I break, I’ll get a little better.
Sandra Jones, author ~ legendary romance
HER WICKED CAPTAIN, Nov 2014