No author is perfect; however, some have come very close to it. Take Ernest Hemingway for example. Hemingway once said, “There is no rule on how to write. Sometimes it comes easily and perfectly; sometimes it’s like drilling rock, and then blasting it out with charges.” He cherished Royal typewriters and used the Royal Quiet DeLuxe line. Well, let me tell you, these bulky machines were anything but quiet. Still, Hemingway loved them. He would stand as he wrote, which makes perfect sense seeing that it took an act of Congress to press the keys.
I don’t think authors begin their career feeling like an author. I believe true authors are born, not created. They enter this world with the unique ability to blend grammar and style with storytelling to weave worlds of imagination. It’s a talent I don’t think can be mimicked or replicated. A writer may spend many years writing, but not feeling like a true author. Some consider publication the point where authors are born.
I can tell you this is not true.
Some published writers are only writers who were lucky enough to receive a buck. I’ve read enough books to know that publication doth not an author make. I think that being an author is a 50/25/25 split.
25% is the ability to create, to imagine. You have to be able to visualize worlds that don’t exist and then bring them to life.
Another 25% is the ability to learn. A true author is never perfect, even though some are terribly close. There is always room to learn and grow. Expanding grammar, composition, and style is essential.
50% of the entire equation is the ability to believe, to envision your success, your ability, and, most importantly, your talent. If you don’t believe that you are an author, you’ll never be one (also you won’t ever fly with Peter Pan).
A few years ago, a very special friend of mine presented me with a gift, one of those out of the blue things. I came in from work to find a huge box with a large bow sitting on the table in the middle of my kitchen along with an accompanying letter. The letter was a heartfelt testament to my determination to become a successful author, the faith they had in me, and how they believed I would find my dream.
I opened the gift to find that I now possessed a genuine 1941 Royal Quiet DeLuxe typewriter, which was nearly in mint condition. I sat there holding the bulky thing in awe, feeling its weight, pressing its keys, and typing my name over and over again. I wondered how many of the great authors from history sat in front of a machine just like it, typing away with no spell check or track editing, and I longed to be them, to know what they knew/know.
When I recognized this desire, along with how excited I was at holding the Royal, I realized something. I understood, without a doubt, that I was an author—maybe a “far-from-perfect” author—but an author still.
Yes, I am an author…
Thank you, my special someone, for showing me how to believe in me. Much love…