In a world full of technology, we are hyper-aware of our ability to edit things. We can edit our Facebook stats, our tweets, and (if we don’t hit “send” too quickly), we can even edit our text messages and emails.
As an author, I have become painfully aware of how terrible I am at grammar, spelling, punctuation and the like. This is one of the reasons why I love blogging so much…because it’s just me spilling my thoughts onto a page without a filter. This is also why I love poetry. Poetry has more flexibility to it (in my opinion). But then there are my books.
Whilst I grow as a writer, I continue to challenge my writing style (see first word in this sentence) to see what I like and what I don’t. In the beginning, I didn’t really think I had a prose writing style. That was until I realized just how much of me is in my characters. They do and say things the way I do and say things because it is what I know. When a character does or say something that I wouldn’t, it’s a bit uncomfortable but also very cool. It’s hard and scary, but it will make me a better writer (hopefully).
That said, my books are dialogue heavy. Why? Um…have you met me? I like to talk A LOT. And I write the same way I talk because (again) it’s what is natural for me. A huge part of who I am is embedded in the belief of the spirit of human connection. For me, this is both verbal and written. Therefore, my characters…yeah…they have a lot to say. Does that make sense?
What I write is mine. It’s my style and everything (as you all know) in the books I write, comes from me. Sometimes I use great words in my everyday language and sometimes I am silly. Sometimes I even make up my own words. I think we all do this. And because I do it, my characters do it, too. I never put anything out there for you all to read that is inauthentic. My authenticity cannot be edited. What I write, no matter how it’s worded, it’s faults in the eyes of some, it’s perfection in the eyes of others, is a piece of me. These books are like my children. I’ve told you before, when you read them, you are not just reading a story someone pulled out of their a**, you are reading something born from MY soul…who I AM. Please be gentle. I’m a fragile, girl, you know.
Once the work is done and the proof of the paperback has been read through many a time, it is submitted…FOR GOOD. And once I hit that button that says “publish” there is no turning back. There is no more editing. The moments in which I’ve hit this button have been some of the bravest moments of my life. It is a blend of terror and pride and happiness and a very intense feeling of vulnerability. There is nothing like it. Like my other two books, With a Purpose, will have its faults. Nothing can be perfect. It was crafted and corrected time and again by humans who have flaws. As a perfectionist, this kind of sucks, but I had to get over it quickly. I won’t ever be able to give you a faultless novel in the context of grammar, punctuation, et cetera. But what I can give to you for as long as I should write are genuine parts of me. And really, when you think about it…who doesn’t want a part of me? Just kidding.
Or am I?
Yes, I am.
On the topic of editing, let’s just take a brief look at what we cannot edit. I’ll spare you with the minimum of two examples (you’re welcome).
As much as we try and as much as we may or may not want to, we cannot edit our love. Whoever or whatever lies within the depths of you hearts is something that cannot be changed. A blessing and curse. And what kind of lesbian would I be if were to not mention AGAIN right here and now that being gay is not a choice. I cannot edit my love. And it is because of my love that I write with the mission statement that I have: to show others as often as I can that love does not discriminate.
We cannot edit our mistakes in real life. We may or do something that wish we could’ve done differently or maybe not at all, but we can’t. We have to face the consequences of what has been done. We can learn from the error of our ways, say our apologies, and such. But we cannot go back in time. We have to keep going forward.
But, like I’ve told you all before (and remember, it’s a running theme in my next book), everything happens for a reason. And sometimes the things we are unable to edit have a way of being more beautiful wrapped up in all their mess after all. Maybe? Beauty is, after all, in the eyes of the beholder.
You have all been with me along my journey in writing With a Purpose. You already know what I’ve been through from naming the characters to naming the book. You already know how much I’ve laughed and cried and anguished over every scene, the fact that words in the human language are finite, and how important the themes are to me personally (just like in all my books fyi). So I want to thank you all again. For listening. For asking. For sending messages, emails, texts and calls of encouragement. And for letting me reach out to you. From my partner who somehow deals with me every day along this process from behind the counter of Starbucks to somewhere in Colombia, I’ve received an overwhelming amount of support. I couldn’t be more lucky or more grateful. It’s finally done. I survived and in the moments when I was so ready to throw in the towel, you all wouldn’t let me. So, I have something in return to give to you (see what I did there?). *wink*
Ladies and gents, I present to you With a Purpose. Or what a friend of mine recently referred to as my “labor of love.” And that’s exactly what it is. #ididit
Jordan Davids was twenty years old the day her first love, Riley Shay, walked out on her with no explanation, and the moment Jordan is finally ready to move forward with the charming local bartender, Amber, a tragedy brings Riley back into town, leaving Jordan to ask one of life’s most critical questions: why is all of this happening?
It has been over two years since Riley’s mysterious disappearance, less than a week since an unexpected suicide, and seventy-two hours since Amber’s date request. To say the least, Jordan is a wreck. In the throes of newfound grief, Jordan is trying to let go of her past with Riley, embrace her future with Amber, and make peace with what is going on in her world this very second.
As secrets unveil, hearts are tested and Jordan must search within herself to find her truth. Somewhere in Jordan’s chaos, there is a purpose. All she has to do to find her peace is surrender.
With a Purpose is about the power of human connections and the roles we play in one another’s lives. We each have our own unique truth that only we can find and choose to share. Sometimes, through sharing these truths, our questions get answered when we least expect them to. And sometimes, random encounters prove to be much more than chance.