Welcome to Following the Whispers blog

Thank you so much for taking the time to visit. Hope you enjoy your stay. I blog here whenever I feel the need. This blog was created at the time my memoir came out, in February, 2009. Its motto was: creating a life of inner peace and self-acceptance from the depths of despair. Now, my focus is sharing this journey we call life.

“Only one thing is more frightening than speaking your truth, and that is not speaking it.” Naomi Wolf

“We are called human beings, not human doings.” Wes Nisker, Buddhist teacher

“It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs…(And) if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly.” Theodore Roosevelt

Monday, August 11, 2014

Monday Musings: on writing

When I lose myself, lose my sense of center, my ability to stay present in my body, it is writing that most often brings me back to myself. It helps me make sense of my world, my feelings, the situations I find myself in. So, in a sense, writing has been with me since I could walk and talk and write. I was in elementary school when I got one of those little diaries that had a key. I loved that I could put my most private thoughts in that little book and, I admit this is a bit delusional, believe that no one would ever read my words.

In my profession, I wrote articles, news releases, brochures and other collateral material. And when I quit my job to write full-time, I stayed with what I knew--non-fiction articles. Then I spent 10 years writing and eventually publishing a memoir that just wouldn't leave me alone until I did it.

Five years ago, a voice came to me while I was vacationing in Ireland and Scotland, saying, "Tell my story." I have spent those years first trying to discern who/what the voice was and allowing it to emerge from the depths of my being, then crafting it into a novel. Now I have to admit, I had fantasized as a child about being like Jo in Little Women, but it was never meant to be reality.

Now it is my reality. I have written a novel. And as Tom Clancy says, "“Success is a finished book, a stack of pages each of which is filled with words. If you reach that point, you have won a victory over yourself no less impressive than sailing single-handed around the world."

So I have succeeded. Yippee. I have been in deep thought about how to publish this book once final revisions are completed. The truth is, my health isn't what I would like it to be and therefore my energy is not as high as I would like. When I think about all the things I will have to do to make this book successful from a sales perspective, I cringe. But never has my writing been about making money. If it was, I would be a complete failure. But I'm not. You see, I know my words touch people. And that is what I must remember as I think about publishing. What is the gentlest way for me to do this process and get my book into the hands of those who need these words.

That brings me inner peace. Just reminding myself of the intention. The decision will flow from there.



Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Hi Karen - congratulations on finishing .. that's great news .. and once published who knows .. sales will come ..

Good for you - cheers Hilary

L. Diane Wolfe said...

I only wanted to inspire others with my stories. Sometimes that's all we can do. You'll find the right path.

Mason Canyon said...

I agree with Diane, you'll find the right path to publishing. You've overcome the biggest challenge, getting the words on paper. Best of luck.

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

I never worried about the success of my stories. I just wrote them. Sometimes that's all we can do.

Karen Walker said...

Hilary, yes they will, I need to not worry about how many.
Diane, thanks for the words of encouragement.
Mason, yes, you're right. I don't think anything could be harder than pulling this story out of me.
Alex, both you and Diane used the same words, "sometimes that's all we can do." Wise words to live by.

Bish Denham said...

Congratulations, Karen! Do what you can, do what you want, as far as getting published and getting the word out. Let the rest fall were it will. In your heart will know you've followed the will that voice and that's all that really matters.

Jemi Fraser said...

Well done! Strangely, the writing (while it can be hellishly hard) is easier than the next steps!

Robin said...

Yes, it is the intention that counts. I love that you have embraced this idea for yourself and plan to use it to make your decisions. Congratulations!

Elizabeth Spann Craig said...

I like your thoughts on making decisions and focusing back on the intention.

I used to love those diaries with the little keys when I was a kid!

Karen Walker said...

Bish, thank you
Jemi, so so true
Robin, thanks so much
Elizabeth - I wonder if this still make and sell those?

Carol Kilgore said...

Congratulations! You know how much work is involved in bringing out a book, but I can say that the mechanics get easier with each one. Nothing else does, though, LOL!

Belva said...

What a beautiful thought and I certainly congratulate you and kiss your finger tips for putting it all together. Success is only a short snort in a tall glass.