Originally published at Joely Sue Burkhart. You can comment here or there.
I’ve always tried to be pretty honest on this blog as far as the writing process is concerned, and so I won’t let good sense shut me up now.
I’m in a very rare (for me) stage of the writing process that I’ll call wallowing. As in, I’m wallowing in my own story and letting my brain rave about how brilliant Road is.
See, I told you good sense should have shut me up. But seriously, when I look back at this journey–not just the journey for this particular book but the long and winding road since 2003–there are so few peaks. There are so few moments where I ever just stood on the Mountain and beamed at the world and knew I’d accomplished something I should be damned well proud of. We’re taught not to brag or be conceited, that pride equals arrogance, and somehow that translates to never showing pride or admitting a sincere feeling of awe in our own abilities.
Celebrating is a part of life, as well as part of the journey. Right now, I’m sitting at a heartwood table in a North Forest tavern, throwing back shots with the warriors and Shannari who dragged me on this journey. We’re telling tall tales about the horrible monsters we encountered, and laughing at all the jokes Sal cracked. (The piebald nag one still makes me laugh until I want to cry.) And underneath all that laughter rings the sorrow for those who fell.
Dead they may be, but never, ever gone.
And I flip back through the story, laughing and crying again, page after page. Just one more time, Gregar whispers, using his rahke to turn the next page for me. Look at this thread that just magically plopped into place. It’s perfectly positioned, perfectly colored, and seems so innocuous; meanwhile, I know exactly what repercussions that thread will have on book 3 and even beyond. Think you this story ends in Shanhasson? Or with Shannari? Oh, no, not at all. Not at all.
Silliness, giddiness, obsession, whatever, the emotion is still high. I’m paralyzed in this joy, wanting to linger and hear the jokes one last time. But I’ve neglected other duties to be here. I have a different book releasing this month; an interview to write; books to read, both published and not; website updates; and of course, the next story…
Yet Gregar gives me a lecherous, wicked wink and taunts with a little flip of his memsha, and Sal tosses his hair back over his shoulder into Dharman’s face, and the two lads start to wrestle and joke until even Varne cracks a smile. And here I still am, laughing through the tears.