Monday, August 15, 2011

Writing and Marriage

Tomorrow will mark my eight year anniversary with my husband. It's crazy to think that I was a 19-year-old newlywed. Looking back, I know how insane it was. At the time I felt mature enough to handle a HUGE commitment like marriage, but now I realize that I was so young and naive. Luckily, I found the right man to go through life with.

Our marriage has been through so many trials, but in the end we've always stuck together, and I have confidence that we will be together forever. Why? Because we are both willing to put in the work that a marriage requires.

When I was 19 I had these skewed fairy-tale romance ideas about love. Cinderella was a subtle theme to my wedding (see the big poofy dress)

But I have learned that love isn't the only factor in creating a family. Marriage is about give and take. Sometimes you're going to be the strong one and you have carry the relationship, and other times you'll need your partner to support you.

In writing, it's the same. Sometime your characters let you flow through a scene with no issues and other times you have to carry the creative burden without much help.

I think we all sit down and feel as if we have a best-selling idea on our hands. We are like 19-year-old's with fantasies about love.

The difference is putting in the effort to work through it all.

Do you ever feel like giving up on your work? What do you do to keep pushing forward?


Ava Jae said...

First of all, happy anniversary! That's wonderful!

As for giving up...whenever I feel like not going on, I remember how much I've put into my writing so far, how many characters I've created and stories I've written, then I simply can't bring myself to just put it away and not go on. I've been working too hard on this for too long to just give up.

You're right that when we first start out, we're pretty naive about how the publishing process really works. And it's not easy to accept the reality and keep pushing forward, but the writers who keep pushing and don't give up are the ones that eventually end up published. :)

Emily R. King said...

Aw, look at that photo! Isn't it weird to see yourself so young? I married at twenty, and I swear, that was only seven years ago, but I'm getting old-er. Happy Anniversary!

Taylorm1984 said...

I feel the exact same way about marriage. It's funny how we think we are so mature and ready to take on such a huge responsibility. Thinking love is all you need. It was a rude awakening for me after a couple of years of marriage. I suddenly realized wow this is hard work! haha But like you I married a man who is willing to work things out and work together. I know we will make it, because we do love each other and we can forgive each other for our faults.

You are a good writer and I can't wait to read your whole book! You can do this!

Mark Noce said...

Congrats on your anniversary:) My wife and I will celebrate ours in Sept. It's funny, but I know a lot of writers that seem to have gotten married around this time of year...go figure:)

J. A. Bennett said...

@Ava - Yes! Perseverance and hard work is the key. I think I also have the same feelings about put it all away and moving on (though I'm tempted from time to time)

@Emily - It is so crazy! My 20yr-old little brother just got engaged and I'm looking at him thinking he's not old enough, then I remember I was even younger. Makes me feel really old.

@Taylor - Thank you so much! My book is such a mess right now, but I just keep telling myself to push forward. I will get there!

@Mark - Ha ha, I've noticed that too. Must be because it's such a lovely happy time of year!

Abby Fowers said...

First off... beautiful dress and picture. :)

2nd... YES! I feel like that all too often, but it is like marriage. If you decide to give up it's over. So realize that you are naive, then learn and grow and persevere. And one day you'll realize that you're all grown up and you've got an awesome book to publish! Just don't quit.

Timothy Nies said...

Good post and happy anniversary

For me, the main reason for not giving up on a writing project is my wife. She likes what I write and I wouldn't be able to bare the look of disappointment I would get from her if I ever gave up on one my stories.

I guess that could be described as perseverance through guilt :)

Also, I love to write which makes it easy to continue.

Timothy Nies

Sarah Pearson said...

Awww Jen, what a beautiful bride you were, and - yes - so young!

Happy anniversary to you, have a wonderful day.

Small Town Shelly Brown said...

It's way harder to write than be married ;) LOL!

Plus, I married a writer...I'm doomed!

David P. King said...

Happy anniversary to you guys! That's awesome!

To answer your question--never!

I take a breather and keep going.

V said...

Hey!! Happy Anniversary!! :D
And Thanks for the comment. I checked out the blog and I like it :D and sorry for not popping in here more often, was kinda busy doing nothing.

Chantele Sedgwick said...

Happy Anniversary! My 8 year was in March! ;)
I love your analogy. Writing is so hard. Honestly, I've never really felt like giving up. I've had ups and downs, but everyone does, right? If we just keep working at it, it will all work out. And I love it, so that's a good reason to keep writing as well.
Great post. I hope you enjoy your day tomorrow! :)

Tyrean Martinson said...

Happy Anniversary!!!
Great analogy too! Writing is just something I have to sit down and do, even when I don't feel like it. Usually once I get going, I like it again. It's just that pesky blank screen, or the scene that needs to be re-worded and I can't seem to get a handle on it. Once I get past those things, it gets better again.

J. A. Bennett said...

@Abby - 1st, thank you! I tend to look back at that dress and say "what was I thinking?"

2nd - Just like in a marriage it takes years (at least for me) to get there.

@Timothy - it's funny because my husband hasn't read any part of my book. He feels like if he does he'll mess it up for me, and I kinda feel self-conscious anyway when he reads my stuff so it's probably best, lol.

@Sarah - Thank you! I guess I feel kinda silly talking about love when everything is crazy in your part of the world. Hope your doing well!

@Shelly - Yes you are, lol! And I totally agree, writing is harder.

@David - that's the kind of attitude I like. I need to work on that...

@V - no worries, glad to have you stop by anytime :)

@Chantele - whaoo for marriages in 2003, lol. Loving it is the best reason!

@Tyrean - I so understand that, the blinking cursor of death! But once I get going, it's all good!

Scott Niven said...

Congrats on the 8 year anniversary! That's fantastic!

One thing that keeps me writing when I feel bogged down is the fact that I'm excited for my son to one day read my book. He already tells his friends about my short story collections, so I want to finish my book for him, to give him something else to read. The day I hand him one of my novels to read is going to be a great day!

cherie said...

Happy Anniversary, my friend! And you look very Cinderella-esque in your wedding gown. What a gorgeous bride!

I love how you tie in marriage to writing. It's so true. It's a commitment. You can't just sit down one day and say, I'll write today. But then if you don't write the next day, or the next, then that novel idea is never going to be born. It is work.

So is marriage. People think being in love is enough, that emotions can get you through married life. They forget it requires work. Yes, WORK, people. It's a give and take relationship.

I hope you had a fun anniversary!! <3

Tailor John said...

Many many happy anniversary You got the eight year best wishes for whole of your life.
Marriage works by loving the right person enough to make the right choices as you do so.

Orange County marriage and family counselor

Nicole Mc said...

Feel like that all the time. ALL the time. I force myself to keep going. (Or make myself give up reading until I meet my recommend.) lol

Congratulations on 9 years! Marriage is tough, but oh so worth it! :)

Dawn M. Hamsher said...

Yeah...marriage only gets better with the years! I'm on 16 years!

My husband and I are going through the video/book study called Sacred Marriage. I highly recommend it! It really makes you think of marriage in a totally different way.

J. A. Bennett said...

@ Scott - That is sweet! My children are so young, but I hope one day i can say the same.

@Cherie - Thank you dear! Commitment is one of the biggest parts to writing, unfortunately books don't write themselves, lol.

@Nicole - I totally hate when I can't read too, no fun!!

@Dawn - 16 years, congrats! I'll have to check out that book, sounds really good!

Red Rose Alley said...

Wow - it was my anniversary yesterday also! We share the same day. Happy Belated Anniversary. I was very young too - 20 years old. You should check out my post. I think you will enjoy it. You look beautiful in your dress.
~Sheri at Red Rose Alley

Jolene Stockman said...

Congratulations!!!! Eight years is AWESOME! I love the comparison to writing, soooo true!