My chrysalis exploded.
It happened a couple of years ago. I was a content caterpillar, munching my way through life when plants grew scarce, the heat turned up, and I got really, really tired. So I made myself a comfy bed and thought I'd rest for a while...little knowing that my world was going to change forever.
Fast forward to a few weeks ago. The lovely Seekers invited me to post and of course I said YES! I mean, it's Seekerville! An educational haven for all writers in various stages of the writing journey. So I flitted over to reread my past posts here because I didn't want to write the same things over and over (knowing me, the recycled topic would involve chocolate and procrastination).
I read what I posted over a year ago. And wow.
I'd almost forgotten the terrible places I've passed through. When I reread this post (http://seekerville.blogspot.com/2014/05/when-inspiration-strikesbut-youre-dead.html), happy tears pricked at my eyelids and thankfulness filled my heart.
Because I'm far from the desert now.
My chrysalis cracked wide open, I crawled out and even though my wings are still damp and don't happily flutter on the breeze every day, I still have a whole new perspective on my habitat. I'm seeing past those dry places and hot sands that used to surround me. When the new wings get tired, I just land on a flower or rest in the shade of a gently furling leaf.
What does the metamorphosis of some lady named Jessica Nelson have to do with writing?
Good question. Not much...but...I can share what I'm learning.
A writer's personal life affects her writing. That's just the way it is. We are creatures of expression, art, truth telling in story form. The ripples of living sometimes shake us, sometimes drown us but sometimes, just sometimes, ripples turn into waves that buoy us higher than we expected, into strange and beautiful places.
When I broke out of that safe, comfortable chrysalis, it hurt. As the sun warmed my untried wings though, I began to wake up. Slowly, I've started daydreaming about characters like I used to. Thinking of great new story plots. Feeling excited to write.
Are you in the throes of metamorphosis? Perhaps you are in that place where you enjoy writing. Or maybe you're burned out and worry you'll never be in love with your characters again. Don't stress! Take care of yourself and when you get to a new season in the writing life, a time where you're strong and healthy, remember these few tips for metamorphosis:
1. Challenge yourself. Do you write 500 words a day? Try 600! You used to write in the morning? Try during the afternoon. Spread those wings, write a book in a different genre, soar upward. You might bump your head on a tree limb but that's okay! You're flying. :-)
2. Dive into different types of promotion and networking. Why be afraid to try something new? There's a bright world out there, waiting for an adventurer like you. The tried and true is great but it's sometimes a new life calls for different actions. If you've never participated in a Facebook party or tweeted or applied for an ad with BookBub, now's the time!
3. Moderation never hurt anyone. In all the awesomeness of trying new things, don't exhaust yourself! You don't want to tear your wings. So keep in mind that the habits you practiced to become strong, the choices you made in the past that brought you to change, are still important. Get to know who you are now and love that person.
4. Writers should be a little wild. Then again, maybe you have some extra energy to burn off. In that case, rip through that cerulean sky. Swirl and swoop and let yourself fly free. Take some risks because you never know how they might pay off and let's face it, you're a different creature now and you can handle different situations. It's time to test your abilities.
5. Never forget the past. Whether you loved being a caterpillar or hated it, the fact is that there is much to be learned from that point in your life. Embrace those lessons and let them guide you in the future.
A metamorphosis can be a painful experience but it's also an unalterable part of life. Don't let the fear of future metamorphoses keep you from emerging from your chrysalis.
Also, what does Godiva have to do with this article and why is it in the title?
The answer is because Godiva is an important and necessary part of this writer's existence. And even though I'm now a colorful butterfly instead of a fuzzy caterpillar, some things should never change.
On that note, what has been the biggest life change you've experienced? Can you look back now and appreciate the person you were? What advice would you give to entering a new situation or season of life?
Share about your own metamorphoses and what you've learned, and get a chance to win Godiva and my newest release, The Matchmaker's Match. Winner announced in the Weekend Edition.
He has three months to find a wife—or lose his estate. Spencer, Lord Ashwhite, doubts he'll find a suitable bride among the ton, until the unconventional Lady Amelia Baxley agrees to provide a list of candidates. It should be an ideal arrangement, were Spencer not growing attached to the one woman Amelia refuses to consider as a prospect: herself.
Independence means everything to Amelia, who has been burned in love before. The charming marquis is quickly putting her entire life in turmoil, and controlling her stubborn heart has never been such a challenge. But does the ever-practical Amelia dare to go from bride-finder to wife?
*side note: my contemporary romance Forever Love will be free on Amazon from August 27-30, 2015 and The Matchmaker's Match is being given away on GoodReads starting August 24-28, 2015* Check it out here.
Jessica Nelson believes romance happens every day, and thinks the greatest, most intense romance comes from a God who woos people to himself with passionate tenderness. When Jessica is not chasing her three beautiful, wild little boys around the living room, she can be found staring into space as she plots her next story. Or she might be daydreaming about a raspberry mocha from Starbucks. Or thinking about what kind of chocolate she should have for dinner that night. She could be thinking of any number of things, really. One thing is for certain, she is blessed with a wonderful family and a lovely life.