Nobody seems to believe I'm an author. On the one hand, I find it hilarious. On the other hand, I find it tremendously irritating. Every since I was five years old, I tried to get people to believe that I wanted to be an author - that I seriously wanted to be an author. Most people had the impression that I wasn't serious - that it was a fad that I was going to pass through. I had to work really hard just to make them understand that I liked writing and that I actually wanted to write a book.
After I got published in a teenage anthology, a few people told me that I was an author. But sometimes it feels like the general consensus is that until you get a whole book of your own published, you are not a real author. You're a partial author. You've written a few pages of something decent - well done! Now try four hundred pages.
When I got a literary agent, people began to take me more seriously, and it felt glorious. And now, at long last, I have a publisher. But my books aren't out yet, and as result, not many people believe me when I say that I'm an author. Even when I say that I have a publishing company, people raise their eyebrows. My music students in particular are very amusing. I tell them that I'm an author. Many of them sit there and say:
"No. No, you're not an author."
"But I am."
"No, you're not. I've never heard of you. I haven't got your autograph."
"Look dear, I'm not that type of author. But I am an author of sorts."
"Well, you're not really a real author."
"Uh, yes, I am."
"No, you're not."
Then the child leans forward and says, with the same sympathy that a good doctor will have for the inmate of an asylum:
"You're actually a music teacher."
Clearly, I'm having an identity crisis when I write books then. I think the "My-Teacher-Does-Nothing-Else-But-Teach-Me-and-She-Lives-In-a-School-or-Studio" is a universal disease that students have, because I've encountered this attitude surprisingly often. I love my students. But this is a flaw many of them have.
So what is an author at heart to do when no one else believes they're an author? When trying to prove yourself just doesn't do any good? I come back to my initial point. One has to believe.
God is a critical part of my life. I cannot do without Him. He's saved me from Hell in this life and in the next. Lots of people think Christians just live to die. That's not how it is at all - at least, not with the ones that really count. We live to do better, to bring a little bit of heaven into this life if we can - and this not through ourselves, but through God and the salvation He has brought us.
It's this belief that's sustained me through my writing journey. When I was ten, I was convinced that God had given me particular ideas and desires for a reason. So I wrote. Even now, I still believe that there's a special purpose for the story that I'm telling. I don't know what it is, and I don't know what will happen to it. I don't even know if anyone will like it. But I know that there's a reason. And that's enough for me.
Why do you write?