I’m getting so excited about the release of my second YA novel, It Should Have Been You. The official release date, January 30, is less than four weeks away!
Who knew that this was the path my life would take? If you had told me in my dancing days that I would ever write a novel, I would have thought you were delirious. Sure, I moonlighted as a freelancer, but all those magazine and newspaper features were nonfiction. And yes, I gobbled up young adult novels, but that was just for pleasure.
I can even recall running into a writing friend in the public library years ago. When she saw all the YA books I was picking out, she said to me, “Maybe that’s what you should be writing.”
“Oh, I could never do that,” I told her. “I don’t have the fiction gene.”
I’m still not sure what possessed me to try writing a novel when my dancing days were over. Maybe there was a huge hole in my creative life. Or maybe I just needed a new dream.
And in all honesty, I still have plenty of moments when I wonder if I have “the fiction gene,” even though I’ve now written three novels and am working on another. In grad school, I suffered from a serious case of “imposter syndrome.” All the other novelists had been telling and writing stories since their pre-school days. Me? I’d been dancing in my living room and begging for lessons. There is, after all, a reason why I called the guest column I wrote last month for Authorlink.com, “Confessions of an Accidental Novelist.”
The experience of pursuing something I never thought I’d been able to do has reminded me that you never know what you can or can’t do until you try. I know… that’s a cliché. The thing is, it’s true.
Maybe I really don’t have the “fiction gene,” but so what? It’s been a lot of fun pretending that I do.