Reflections on a Decade

I’ve been writing for over a decade now. I started in high school, though the stories I wrote then are so cringe-worthy I’d rather burn them than count them toward any sort of writing tally. In college, though, I took several creative writing courses, which helped me hone my craft and gave me a bit more direction.

I started several novels in college and the years immediately after, a couple of which I’ve tinkered with as recently as a couple years ago. I fell in love with so many characters, most of whom are still waiting for me to get around to finishing their stories. And I did finish a story–and rewrote, revised, rewrote (again), and polished–and sent it into the world, hoping to see it published. The feedback I received was overwhelmingly positive, though there’s still a long road to go.

Looking back at my stories, the ones I revisit and work on every now and then as well as those I’ve sealed away in a box in my closet, possibly forever, I’ve learned a few things about myself.

I love music. Every story I’ve written has at least one scene where characters are dancing. Be it a dystopian military barracks, a Viking world, the Wild West, or a World War II field hospital, I find a way to get my characters moving to a tune.

Same with lovable sidekicks. I fall a little harder for the minor characters than my main characters in pretty much every story I write. Could be a sign my stories are following the wrong people; I like to hope it just means all my characters are fleshed out well.

And siblings. Be it found-family or blood, all my main characters share a strong sibling bond with one of said sidekick-type characters.

As we move farther into the 2020s, I’m already following this pattern. I’ve got another story down–complete with a fireside dance scene and an incorrigible, lovable little brother–and too many more ideas wrestling to be next.

By annieatkin

When Annie isn't losing herself in someone else's words, she's daydreaming her own stories. She lives at her desk, sometimes venturing into the rest of her home to spend time with her husband. By day she works in an office, but nights and weekends belong to her craft. She loves good tequila, homemade spaghettios, and she will never say no to ice cream.

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