Insecure Writer's Support Group

The Insecure Writer's Support Group:

Holy shit on a stick ... with mustard and onions. Now I know I'm getting old. I can no longer blame the lighting in my bathroom or the "fun house" mirrors in my bedroom for my wrinkled forehead. I guess the doc telling me I didn't need Botox anymore (nope he wasn't paying me any compliments ... he flat out said my "thick" forehead skin no longer reaped the benefits of Botox injections.) He wasn't lying. It sure wasn't lasting the six months it was supposed to. Admittedly, there's no one to blame but myself. Growing up in the 80's and taking my first grown up trips without parents in there 90's, I visited every beach we could afford to pack 15 people into one Holiday inn and live on beer and peanut butter. We spent the rest of our money on olive oil and aluminum foil. No sunscreen for this wild girl. Uh-huh. Olive oil got me darker and the tin foil accelerated my tan. What in the hell was I thinking? My skin is paying for it now.

Six years! Thank you Alex. If I didn't feel insecure before I began writing this ... I do now, Lol

Six years of writing and I'm not yet published. 

Six years. But I have-not been consistent with my writing and that's on me ... just like the wrinkles from earlier bad choices.

I've had some starts and stops. The first few years I just wrote organically, (stream of conscious, I suppose some call it). Like I said, I didn't know much about the craft. 

Then I got serious about my desire to write a novel. And I began studying the craft. I think I read every book written on the subject. Some were extremely helpful and remain on my bookshelf and in my Kindle for easy reference and some ... well not that great, but this isn't a review. I took online courses and attended writing conferences and learned how much I didn't know and needed to learn.

I met so many fabulous, gifted, talented and helpful bloggers/authors along the way so I don't regret any of the the lost time. I don't consider it lost time. 

My family just seemed to suffer through several subsequent tragedies and I lost that oomph I had in me-- that spark -- that driving urge to write. The intense need to write diminished a little more with each tragedy. This past year, preparing my kids for their dad's death, I couldn't even force myself to write a blog post much less a scene for my WIP.

One day, a few weeks after the funeral, My youngest son asked me (out go the blue), "Hey mom whatever happened to the books you were writing?"

Say what?

Color me shocked.

I whipped my head around.


"Why don't you write anymore? You were the happiest I've ever seen you when you were writing.?"

"Really?" I managed another one word answer, unaware he even knew mom's dream of the best seller list.

"Yea. You used to sit in the car for hours waiting for my friends and me at soccer practice or the skating rink or anywhere really. Just a writing. Every time you walked in my room late at night you had that notebook in your hand, but you had a giant grin on your face. You loved it. You seemed so ..."

He hesitated, pondering. I dared not interrupt because that's what we argue most about now. So I waited ... and waited.

"Content. Yea, that's the word. Happy for sure. but man, mom you were so content. And I bet dad wants you to publish your book and quit moping around."

I needed a good cry, like belting out wet sobbing boo hoo tears, but I held them in. 

I already had my son, cheering me on, giving me "the pep talk," My son, the kid talking me out of my funky mood with a story so he didn't have to come right out and say, "Hey mom, get your shit together. I don't have a dad. My sister left for college. 

No more lifetime movies and bonbons on the couch. Let's pull through this."

What a wake up call. That and realizing the IWSG is on its 6th year. So a great big shout out to Alex Cavanaugh my blogging hero/ninja for giving me the courage to keep coming back.

The Next Contest Sounds Amazing. How many of  you are Entering

But the one I'm really excited about is the Show Us Your Writer's Insecurity Contest

It's been so long since I posted, I know I'm no longer on the IWSG list. Maybe I can add my name again

Oh, and I almost forget my good news ... well sort of good news. Nothing is good news when it pertains to death and losing someone you care for. But, I started writing again and it has blown me away how I've been able to channel my grief into my WIP. I write for hours and don't even realize half the day is over. I had my first ever 11K word day. And my scenes (rough draft) but the visceral, raw emotion is real, spell binding. I'm often in a trance. This is the best way to work through my grief. Good thing I'm writing a suspenseful , domestic thriller and not romance or comedy.


  1. Hi, Melissa! I'm making the rounds today as an IWSG member, and I'm so glad that I read your powerful posts. I'm so sorry that you and your family have gone through such a difficult time. I can't even imagine! I was blown away by your son's insight and his encouragement to you to get back to something that feeds your soul! What a gift from someone who loves you! I can't worry about how much time I've squandered regarding writing. Life happens, and I just have to be grateful that I'm in a place in life now when I can write. Best of luck to you ~ Enjoy that you are in a writing place now! Take care.

  2. Melissa, I am sorry! My prayers are with you. Your son is very wise for his age. Take those words to heart. Start writing again.

  3. I decided long ago to let my wrinkles and gray hair run rampant. I've earned every wrinkle and gray hair my kids (and sometimes life) has given me. I tell myself the same thing about the added poundage, lol.

    It seems there is always something more to learn about writing. I will be writing a submission for the anthology. I think. Been rejected twice so I'm not sure I write what they are looking for. Still, its writing, and I can always submit it elsewhere. Writing is always a relaxing endeavor.

    Take care Melissa, and don't worry over the lack of botox. That will only thicken the forehead more, lol.

  4. Wow, what a powerful post, Melissa. I am so sorry for your loss. I can't even imagine what you're going through. Thank goodness for writing to channel the energy through! Your son spoke such beautiful truth it brought tears to my eyes. My sons do the same light-bearing duties here, too. My writing journey is very similar to yours, in every way, except for the fact I've been doing it longer and finally self-published two years ago. Keep going. Your blog post held me riveted and I read every word, so you've got talent there. Don't give up! :-)

  5. Hi Melissa - yes your son must have inherited some 'wise-ness' from you both ... looks like - how great he can see the wood for the trees ... and now that you've planted that seed of words ... it'll grow and keep growing.

    Well done son ... and that'll make you laugh for many a year ... brilliant that he had it all worked out - and it's great to see you took it on board and realised what was missing. However understandable seeing what you've all been going through ... but I'm glad the writing lamp is on - just enjoy and keep on writing ... and your books will be read by many. Cheers Hilary

  6. Wow, sorry about your skin.
    I think, when it comes to publishing, it's a good idea to take as long as you need to get the story you want. Family always comes first.
    Your son sounds wonderful.
    My writing helped me throuh some tough times, so I get it. Find inspiration where you can.
    Glad to have you back at the IWSG.

  7. What an amazing child. You're both lucky to have each other. I'm so sorry for all your family has been through and so glad you found your way back to writing. Look forward to visiting again soon.

  8. This is my first time here, Melissa. I love your blog! I'll follow it and connect with you online.

    Oh. My. Gosh! I went everywhere with a notebook, too. I have 5 kids, and when I went to their baseball/softball or soccer games or swim meets, I was jotting ideas or notes about some plot or dialogue. The only time I couldn’t write was during their music concerts or plays. It was too dark!

    Thanks for sharing your ups and downs with writing with your followers. Enjoy your week!
    Victoria Marie Lees,

  9. Hi Melissa. I was just looking back on one of my old flash fictions, reading your comment, and wondering how you were. And I've found you've been through hell and are on the way back. I'm so sorry I didn't keep closer touch with you. But I'm glad your son had the wisdom to remind you of your writing, and glad you've picked it up again.
    Grieving is hard, and sometimes you'll feel like writing, sometimes you won't - but more often than not you'll need to.
    I'll be back soon :) Hugs

  10. I'm so sorry for your loss, but I do hope you find and keep that writing spark. *hugs*


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