Note: Sorry for not posting lately. Life has been quite busy the past several weeks. I’ll be getting back to a regular posting schedule. Good thing for NaNoWriMo to help kick start my writing!
Decades Into the Future
Dear DH Hanni,
Congratulations! You’re still writing! Awesome. It’s not been easy, but you’ve stuck with it through ups and downs. I’d love to tell you your insecurity and self-doubt went away, but it didn’t. That’s okay and normal even though you’ve had more success. Yes, you read that right. You get more success. 😊
It was a good decision to take a few years off from writing short stories to concentrate on novel writing. After the chaos of 2017 and major life changes, you got down to business and threw yourself into novels. You also finally got the confidence to believe in yourself. This allowed you to relax and let the words flow. Doesn’t mean writing became easy, but it became easier than before.
You’ve written novels in a few genres. Never did settle on just one genre and that’s okay. The publishing industry got less pissy about one genre per author. Helps you turned into a hybrid author both self-publishing and publishing via the traditional route.
Speaking of publishers, good call going the small to medium size route. You did take chances and submitted work to big publishers, but ultimately small to medium publishers was a way better fit for you. They gave you the ability to have a say in the process and they listened to how you wanted to approach marketing. You got over appearing before people in public, though there are times when your anxiety flares up over being the center of attention.
You’re still amazed anyone reads your novels let alone like them. Good call ignoring reviews and all that stuff. Unfortunately, people on the internet still lack civility and brains. Constructive criticism still isn’t a thing. All of that is noise anyway. This isn’t to say you’ve completely isolated yourself from fans or anything. I know. It’s probably weird reading you have fans, but it’s true. You interact with them at appearances and a handful of events you feel comfortable attending. You also interact a little bit online, but you value your privacy and dedication to writing so you practice moderation.
Speaking of writing, once you learned to relax and not allow insecurity to get in the way, you began believing in the quality of your prose. You stopped being afraid of exploring uncomfortable emotions. Another good decision was not paying attention to when people complain about “ugliness” in novels. Other people’s comfort level doesn’t stop you. Be true to the story is what you always say. Yeah, you come up with a catch phrase. Makes it easy in interviews when you get asked repeatedly what your biggest piece of advice is for writers.
You may be wondering about this success I mentioned above. What do I mean by this? Well, it means you will have several novels published. Each one you release sells better and better. Do you make the best seller list? I’ll never tell. 😊 Do you accomplish one of your dreams of having a book adapted into a mini-series? I’ll never tell. I can’t spoil everything for you, now can I?
To you, present me, reading this, keep going. It’s worth it and for fuck’s sake, let go of your guilt. You know what I’m talking about. Writing is how you express yourself. There’s nothing to be afraid of or ashamed of regardless of whatever you’ve written is good or bad. You deserve to write. Writing is important. What you have to say is important. The sooner you can believe in yourself, the sooner you’ll have the kind of success you want. It’ll still be a slow process as you still won’t be the fastest writer, but you’ll be able to get the kind of success you dream about. That’s another thing. Dream and dream big! Don’t tell yourself it makes you arrogant or delusional. Dreams are what keep you going.
Now, you better listen to the advice given in this letter. In the future, I know a thing or two.
Future DH Hanni