Long about this time seven years ago, two things happened that changed my life. 1) I started my first novel, and 2) I found my husband.
I'm not sure either my novel or my marriage would've happened without the other.
In February of '04, I was already a couple weeks and a few thousand words into writing the book that would become Spectacle (aka Fear Itself), but this wasn't the first book I ever started. At that point, it was probably headed for the same tragic end as the others. Sure, I was writing almost every night after work - which is a helluva lot more committed than I'd been to any of the others - but I was also a single mom with a full time job. I had the will to finish, just not the time and certainly not the confidence to squeeze an hour or two every day out of my busy schedule.
Enter one late post-Valentine's day night, sitting around feeling that hole in my life like a six year old prods the empty spot where her tooth used to be. That night, I sat down at my computer and did a hard-target search. My casual browsing previously had only yielded the incompatible, so I expanded my search outside the greater Salt Lake valley area. I figured there had to be someone somewhere in the country who would be my Mr. Right.
I found him in six-hundred-some miles away . He replied to my tentative note and we were off to the races. After numerous more emails, I sent him the first few chapters of my book and waited with nerves of Jell-o. Once he read the snippet of unfinished, unedited story, he wrote me back. I don't remember his exact words, but they were something along the lines of it would be a damn shame if I didn't write books for the rest of my life.
I was already falling in love with the man, but I think that sent me right over the edge. It also gave me the confidence to continue to write this fledgling thing I would call my first book. Not too awfully long after we were married and I moved out to CO, whereupon we had many discussions of whether I would work or I would write. He won. He told me my job was to write books.
And I've been doing it ever since.
So, you see, I don't think I would've ever finished that novel if he encouraged me. And I don't think I would've gotten him to fall for me if it weren't for that novel.
Sure, it's been a long seven years of writing, but it's also been a short seven years of loving this wonderful man. Writing novels and spending forever with my husband - I wouldn't trade either for anything in the world.