Posted On September 25, 2017 by Print This Post

How Becoming a Writer Saved my Life By Adriana Anders

Welcome debut author Adriana Anders – like most of us she’s had a series of ups and downs in her life – but she kept plugging away at writing – and look at her now!

My name is Adriana and I’m a bookaholic. It started around age ten and, while it’s been manageable at times, the addiction has never gone away. Oh, and have I mentioned the voices in my head? Yeah, I’ve always had those. They’re conversations with myself in the dead of night, made-up situations, and comebacks I should have made, except they come to me hours after the fact.

In other words, I’m a writer. If this sounds familiar, you could be, too.

Unfortunately, I’m also a procrastinator and, for most of my life, couldn’t string more than a few words together without wanting to hurl them at a wall. Before having my second child, I had a job that made me miserable, writing technical documents and marketing copy, and I was convinced that this was it for me. I’d be doing this for the rest of my life. I had a two-month maternity leave to look forward to—an exhausted last hurrah before retirement—and then nothing but work, work, work.

It must have been hopelessness that did it, and the fact that it felt like my last chance. Whatever it was, I forced myself to write. One page at a time, day after day, while my two-year-old napped, my newborn daughter at my breast (literally, nursing), I wrote a 40,000 word novella in eight weeks. And it was terrible. But it proved that I—the woman who’d never turned a paper in on time—could do it.

Not only that, but after years of feeling as though my imagination had dried up (I was convinced my creativity had peaked at age five), the ideas finally started flowing. I couldn’t type fast enough.

Eventually, I had to go back to the day job, but everything had changed: I’d broken through the lack-of-confidence barrier. And I kept squeezing those words in, at nap time, late at night, early or over the weekends.

Money got tight when I lost my job and my husband’s work fell through. We sold our house and moved my whole family in with my folks (bless them), but still, I wrote. Not only did I write, but writing became the thing that saved me when everything else was crap. My therapy, my community, my hope for something better. That first year, I wrote two books—a steamy, dark contemporary romance and a post-apocalyptic romance—and those books kept me sane. The next year, I scored my dream agent, quickly followed by a three-book contract. Even now I get goosebumps thinking about how bad things were and what a difference writing made.

My daughter’s celebrating her fourth birthday today, eating cake and dancing with five screaming princesses and my first book is out next month. In all, I’ve written five books and a crappy novella in four years, with three releases planned for 2017. Not bad for a woman who couldn’t write a 20-page paper.

Are you an author waiting to happen? Is lack of confidence or ideas holding you back? I want to hear your stories! Follow me on Facebook or Twitter.

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Join us on Wednesday for more more more RU!

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Bio: Adriana Anders writes romance that’s dark, smart, and full of heart. She has acted and sung, slung cocktails and corrected copy. She’s worked for start-ups, multinationals and small nonprofits, but it wasn’t until she returned to her first love—writing romance—that she finally felt like she’d come home. Today, she resides with her tall French husband, two small children and two cats in the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains, where she writes the gritty, emotional love stories of her heart.

Her award-winning Blank Canvas series is available now.

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12 Responses to “How Becoming a Writer Saved my Life By Adriana Anders”

  1. Morning Adriana!

    I’m at that “my creativity has dried up” portion of my life at the moment! I’m hoping it comes back soon….I kind of miss the voices talking in my head. =)

    Thanks for posting with us and glad you found a way out of your void.

    carrie

    Posted by Carrie Peters | September 25, 2017, 9:10 am
    • Hi Carrie! Thank you so much for having me!

      Oh, I know that phase very well! I’ve found that it happens most often when I don’t (or can’t) give myself time to think. The past year has seen a ton of changes for me and the hardest times were when I couldn’t get a walk in or a drive or, honestly, even a second without work or a child needing something. I’m happy to report that I’ve got my mojo back. 🙂
      Adriana

      Posted by Adriana Anders | September 26, 2017, 6:44 am
  2. Yes, writing saved my life during a really crappy time. It’s forced me out into a world of other writers, which is good, but I don’t think I’ll feel any credibility until a) I finish this b) I get an agent or contract.

    Posted by Janice Laird | September 25, 2017, 2:09 pm
    • Hi Janice,
      I get that. I felt the same way while working on those first books. When you feel ready, I highly recommend entering your ms (usually just the first pages) in a local RWA chapter contest. You may have already done this. For me, the feedback was very helpful and one of the contests led me straight to my dream agent!
      Take care,
      Adriana

      Posted by Adriana Anders | September 26, 2017, 6:51 am
      • Thank you for your comment, Adriana. I just checked my local (Heartland) contest listing and I missed the deadline of last Friday! I have a manuscript ready, so I wrote the organizer. Maybe they will still let me enter…..

        Posted by Kathleen Day | September 26, 2017, 8:58 am
        • You can enter them all across the US. I think, ironically, that Heartland is the one that I got my agent through! The feedback from first round judges can be incredibly helpful, so I’d enter a couple. Also, keep an eye on who the final round judges are. You might just see your dream agent or editor listed! Break a…finger? <3

          Posted by Adriana Anders | September 27, 2017, 9:56 am
  3. Wow – that’s quite a story, and one I can totally relate to! Congratulations on your new release and please give your daughter a birthday hug from me. That is SUCH a fun age!

    Posted by Becke Martin Davis | September 26, 2017, 6:11 pm
  4. Great blog, Adriana. My writing is keeping me sane, too. Or is that insane. Hmmm. Love your books.

    Posted by Sheila Grice | September 26, 2017, 6:22 pm
  5. I was the type who would complain that there’s never enough hours in the day. Sometimes I would promise myself, usually New Years day, that this would be the year I wrote that book. My thoughts changed after a cancer scare. There was no cancer but it got me thinking. Six months later I finished my first draft and now my editor and I are close to the finish line. We are all survivors in this writing world and most of the time our personal stories are far better than the books we write. Thank you, Adriana. Excellent piece.

    Posted by Bryan Fagan | September 29, 2017, 8:35 am

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