We All Start Somewhere – Raven Oak

We All Start Somewhere

A wonderful bit of humor and…maybe “uuuggh” greeting me this morning as I continued organizing my writing office. (Once I finish it, I’ll post pics. I promise!) Everything in our home is unpacked, but we still have pockets needing organization and pictures to hang. The stuff people who move put off until the last possible minute.

Steel Magnolias

The “Steel Magnolias”

Because I spent most of the last year writing in coffee shops, I wasn’t all that worried yet about my office. I figured the rest of the house should come first since I was perfectly happy writing out and about Seattle. But recently, I’ve craved the feel of a private space where I can write without distraction. As much as I love Magnolia’s Uptown Espresso, every mom with a cranky toddler/baby frequents it when I’m up against a deadline and trying to focus. (Who brings their 3 month old to a coffee shop??) Or it’s the group of little old ladies I’ve dubbed the “Steel Magnolias.” They are just as loud and silly and crass as the gals in the movie. Funny to watch, but not so great for focusing on serious scenes. 😉

One of the jobs I have left to do in my office is organize all the books and binders on the 4 bookshelves within it (my office is also our library). On one particular shelf, I have binder after binder from the past decade (or more) of writing—all from times before I began using Scrivener to help organize my writing and research. For the next few days before my conference, I’m writing for an hour and spending the rest of the day working on my home office. I’ll get back to normal schedule next week (which is why you won’t see the progress meters on the right going up very much).

This morning, I picked up an old binder laden with dust and splatter marks from pens? markers? paint? I honestly couldn’t tell you—but this binder’s yellowed pages intrigued me. When I opened it, I grimaced. And then I laughed. A lot.

It was the first novel I ever wrote. The Cry of the Dragon. My 6th grade attempt to be Anne McCaffrey, right down to character names with apostrophes and Rynholders and Rynleaders. It was fan-fiction without my realizing it—I didn’t know what fan-fiction was yet. Writing it, I thought I was doing what “real writers” do by making similar plot lines to other works. (Hey, I was eleven, remember?)

I read the first five pages before I closed the dusty binder and stowed it away in the storage file cabinet. Maybe I’ll post an excerpt if you guys want to see it—but only if you promise to remember that it was written when I was eleven years old. Don’t judge me too harshly—we all start somewhere!

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