While I wrote Glory, I was excited. There was action, suspense, horror. There were characters that I loved and others that I despised (although in some way I loved them too). It was something I knew, as a reader, I would’ve loved to read.
But I was also worried. I wrote about some very serious situations. I got into some very dark themes. And I wondered how people were going to judge me for it.
That I was teaching kindergarten at the time didn’t help.
I had been at that kindergarten for three years and had had a great rapport with the children and parents. Without getting too much into it at the moment, I had a reputation with being able to help the so-called “problem” students. So much so that every year I was there I was given more and more to help.
But once my book was done, I wondered if that reputation was going to mean much. I didn’t know if people would be able to look at me the same or trust me around their children. Not after the stuff I had written.
I also wondered what my friends and family were going to say.
Honestly, I struggled.
Now, the book I wrote is a post-apocalyptic story. And I know that no one expects good things to happen in a story like that. There have been several books written like this before, touching upon the same themes. More than that, there are several books that aren’t even post-apocalyptic that touch upon the same themes and MORE. There are some dark books out there.
But this was the first that I had chosen to put out there. It was the first time I said that I write those things too.
Yes, honestly, I struggled.
I still struggle to an extent. I’m much more comfortable with my work. I appreciate the entertainment value mixed with the messages I’m trying to convey. But there’s always a part of me that worries about what people are going to think.
That’s a part I try not to listen to.
I can’t. If I did, I’d never get anything done. And, if I did get anything done, it wouldn’t reflect who I truly am as a writer.
As I’ve discovered over time, I need to be true to my story. I need to be true to myself.
But, yes, I still struggle.