As I have been working on editing and rewriting my novel, it struck me that much of my journey thus far has been an attempt to find my voice, my writing style. When I first started writing it was pretty painful getting words down onto paper, not just because I wasn’t certain what to say, but also because I wasn’t sure how to express the things I was thinking and feeling. Transforming the images in my head and the scenes that play out in mind from thoughts into written expressions that other people would be able to read and understand has never really come naturally or easily to me. It’s been a lot of work and lot of effort.
The first step in my journey of writing a novel, was merely getting my thoughts down on paper in any form I could. Some words became detailed descriptions, other words formed into dialogues between characters with pretty terrible grammar, because I hadn’t learned yet how dialogue grammar worked. Parts of my book took the form of streaming thoughts, where I was having more of a discussion with myself than with anyone else as I tried to understand and define character and story elements to give my story substance.
With each word I wrote, my confidence and my competance slowly grew until I reached where I am today. Not yet a true novelist, but one that is well on her way. My rough draft is mess. As I work through the editing stages, refining my story as I go, there is so much that has to be redone and so many chapters that have to be rewritten. It is sad in a way. Recognizing that so much of what I wrote to get me to this point will be tossed by the wayside. But I realize now, that each of those words and that hours spent writing them was not a waste, but a necessary part of my progress and growth and an integral step toward finding my voice.