Surprise Support

11 Jul

I just read Tawna Fenske great post on the guilt of the UnCall situation (wow, seriously. Can you say “worst nightmare” as a writer?) and Writer Guilt in general. One of her lines was a typical zinger about support that included her bikini waxer. I laughed — Tawna always makes me laugh. Seriously, she needs to come to Boston so I can get her drunk and make a video for youtube.

Yeah, not my point.

The point? I thought, wow, my esthetician really *is* part of my support group. Every month I go in to get my eyebrows looking lovely and my skin taken care of. The first thing Liz asks every month is how’s the writing? Do you have a deal yet? Any new ideas? Are you feeling energized? You’re not wearing yourself out yet? And recently… My mom says… because her mom is a big reader and is now an invisible part of my support group.

 It really drove home a point to me. While one of my best friends is constantly…I don’t want to use the word “nagging”, but shoe, fit? Yeah… me about my writing: It’s draining. It makes you work too hard. It isn’t financially rewarding. Most people never get anywhere. Not to mention the ongoing arguments about what I write and who I know through writing.

This is one of my closest friends. She is not part of my support group.

Liz is.

Support isn’t about who you’re closest too, but who holds you up in that area of your life. Who works to “get it.” Who knows when to show you the love and when to challenge you. Your support group understands and remembers when you tell them things like “it’s going to take me 2 to 12 years to get an agent” OR “I’ll only make a couple thousand off my first book if I’m lucky” OR “Now we wait” — they either get it or try to get it.

VWG (Vicarious Writing Girl) has zero to do with the writing world, but guess who is constantly sending me links from the NYT about writing, publishing and authors?

When, after sending out how many manuscripts, I got signed with my agent, I definitely let the women at the post office know. They were always supportive.

My first phone call wasn’t to the friend I was staying with, but to my inner circle of writing girls.

Do you see what I’m saying? Not only will support come from suprising places — but the opposite is true is well. Not always will those closest to you support your writing.

So, if you’re a smart writer, you’ll separate the two. You’ll share your struggles with the supporters and they’ll be the first people you share your triumphs with. Don’t judge the others, they just don’t get it. It’s like that friend who never struggled with weight telling you you CAN eat that second cupcake.

Instead, REJOICE in those who understand and those who try to understand – no matter where you find them. They’re a blessing. Don’t grow angry over loved ones who don’t get the cupcake thing… I mean the writing thing. Humor the poor dears. They obviously have no imagination and if there’s one thing we writer’s have in spades, it’s that.

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7 Responses to “Surprise Support”

  1. Tawna Fenske July 11, 2010 at 12:10 pm #

    Great points all around! I blogged a few months back about how it can be tough to share details about your writing with people you only see a couple times a year, since it forces you to rehash your failures with people who don’t understand that writing a book doesn’t always equal immediate publication. But you’re absolutely right that those same people can end up being your biggest cheerleaders. The circle of friends who’ve been cheering me on is big and diverse, and I rely on each of those people for something different.

    Thanks for writing this!

    Tawna

  2. briaq July 11, 2010 at 12:15 pm #

    Awww thanks. It’s been a long road accepting that support needs to come from where it comes from…not where you *want* it to come from.

    That, and as you said, a good bra.

  3. Bethanne July 11, 2010 at 12:44 pm #

    This is a great post for today… Sunday inspiration, you know? 🙂 I fret about who will get it, and how many won’t, and how it’ll be to have my work out there and not feel support from loved ones. But I do have lots of support: friends, acquaintances, the lady at Mail Boxes, Etc. She was sooo nice when I sent out a manuscript and wished me luck and told me she was an illustrator… and yadda, yadda, yadda. 😀 LOL Still, nice gal.

  4. briaq July 11, 2010 at 1:02 pm #

    That’s awesome – The mail ladies definitely know all the writers in the area. They keep trying to set me up with one LOL

  5. Janelle July 11, 2010 at 5:44 pm #

    I’ve been blessed to have a lot of support from friends and family, but Twitter is a big part of that support group for me as people who really get it! I have learned so much from you and Tawna and the other writers/agents that I follow!

  6. briaq July 11, 2010 at 7:01 pm #

    Wow, well – I find it hard to believe I’m helpful in anyway – but I hope I am! Thanks so much

  7. Mandy July 12, 2010 at 2:26 pm #

    I don’t normally comment on blogs (I stink) but I had to mention how much I enjoyed this one. Came at just the right time too — I can totally identify!

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