Sunday I spent a couple of hours talking to my oldest friend. She is exactly three months younger than I am and we’ve been like sisters our whole lives. We live on opposite coasts, so our main communication these days is very long phone conversations a few times a year.
Sunday, after catching up on life and family, old friends and books, we ended up talking about writing. Our fathers were English professors, so maybe it was natural that we both loved reading books and writing from the time we were little. We wrote stories and poems and plays, performed some of them, too. Because it was fun.
Mina went on to get an MA in English and teach professional writing for many years. I ran off to the theater, filmmaking, and journalism. Neither one of us writing fiction. Every ten years or so I’d painfully crank out a short story. Stash it in the proverbial drawer and go back to real life.
But if you work at WMG for Kristine Kathryn Rusch and Dean Wesley Smith—among all the other wonderful writers who contribute to Fiction River and Pulphouse and participate in workshops—the joy of writing fiction kind of sneaks up on you, slips its little hand in yours and asks you to come out and play.
So I did. And do. For fun.
Kris blogged about her youthful writing adventures last week, and it rang a bell for me. Of course, she and Dean do much more than write for fun. Among other things, they have written a whole series of books on the profession of writing, the WMG Writer’s Guides, and Kris has a magnum opus called The Freelancer’s Survival Guide. Countless people have turned to these books for guidance. And now, just in time for Kris’s Spring Writing Storybundle, we are publishing her latest, Writing With Chronic Illness.
Here’s the description:
In this WMG Writer’s Guide, award-winning author Kristine Kathryn Rusch offers words of wisdom for writers who suffer from chronic illnesses and who want to keep working, to improve their craft and spread their creative wings.
A long-time sufferer herself, Rusch reports from the trenches. She tells us her own struggle with health issues and how they challenge her. But none of it actually derailed her career; she worked out ways to keep writing, and in the process became an international bestselling author with hundreds of books in print.
Rusch helps writers customize a plan of action based on the writer’s individual experience. She shows how to increase productivity by developing a positive, and realistic, outlook.
Importantly, Rusch points the way to reclaim the joy of writing, and celebrate success.
The bundle has LOTS more in it, too. Look out for it on Thursday; it includes Dean’s lecture on Carving out Time for Your Writing, Kevin J. Anderson’s The Million Dollar Writing Series Boxed Set, and Mark Leslie Lefebvre’s Killing it on Kobo, and six more wonderful books of information and advice for writers.
And now you see why I mentioned the importance of joy. Even if Dean and Kris didn’t talk, write, and lecture about joy often, anyone paying attention would surely detect that the enjoyment of writing is at the heart of what they do and why they do it. And I’m here to tell you it’s infectious.
My friend Mina said I had inspired her to have some fun writing, too. Maybe we can trade some stories before the next time we talk…see? Infectious.