Writing can be a grueling, difficult occupation or even hobby, and writers tend to be somewhat insecure at best. We need the support and encouragement of our friends and family, as well as complete strangers. As you’ve read over the past week, most of us have been fortunate enough to have a strong support structure. For this week’s Ephemera, we asked the Confabulators who their biggest supporter has been.
My mom has always supported everything artistic that I’ve tried and she was the financial backing behind my minicomics series in the early 2000s so she’s definitely up there. I mean, Mom has to tell me I’m doing things the way they should be done, right? But I’m also lucky enough to have a friend who’s a writer in his own medium who has always encouraged me to keep going even when a story misses its mark. When we get together he always asks me what I’m working on and what’s coming up next, too, and that’s the kind of artistic support that keeps me coming back to writing when I’m frustrated.
The Husband, by and far. He supports me continuing to do it full time, when we would be better off financially with me doing pretty much anything else. When I get discouraged and feel like quitting, he helps me through it. When I just need to sit down and talk out what I’m doing, he’s there. He rocks it pretty hard, and I wouldn’t be anywhere near as far along without him cheering me on.
Several people in the Writer’s Digest forum seem to be my biggest fans and have written nice reviews of my YA novels in several places. I am humbled. However, my favorite review came from someone named “Jade” via Barnes & Noble: “This book is ok idk if its my fav but i do know it was ok”.
I am fortunate in that I have never met anyone who was not supportive of my writing. My writing career has been marked by a constant stream of support from a variety of sources, even those who don’t particularly understand or appreciate my type of writing. I definitely owe them all a debt of gratitude.
My biggest supporter has to be my mom. She doesn’t always “get” speculative fiction, but she’s always willing to read the stories I’ve written. After NaNoWriMo last year, when several of us traded manuscripts, I called my mom because I was so elated that I had gotten positive feedback. I got a card in the mail a few days after that from my mom, congratulating me on my novel that “had potential.” My mom has always been proud of me for being able to write a novel and I am eternally grateful to her for that.
Fellow NaNoWriMo participants, mostly. I have lots of friends and family that support me in principle, but getting those individuals to read/critique/participate in any way is usually difficult/impossible. My fellow NaNo writers get what I’m up to, however, and have been a major source of support.
I’ve had various “biggest” supporters of my writing throughout my life. In junior high, it was my 8th grade English teacher, Mr. Coleman. I never thought my writing was any good before him. Around that same time, just as I was getting my start as a writer, my Dad was always a big supporter – I could always go to him to help with ideas. When I wanted to get my MFA in Creative Writing, Mom helped me look for grad schools. Over the last several years, my brother and sister have been incredibly supportive, offering to read and give feedback on the stories I’ve written. In the last year, I’d say my writing group family has been my biggest support structure. They are there for me every time I want to give up and remind me what being a writer is really about. All of these people have given me legs to stand on.