‘You advocate for your work the way you advocate for your child. You never stop believing in its merits and its right to be heard. Most importantly, you must never stop hoping.’
Today writer/author Tina Callaghan joins me with a wonderfully inspirational post entitled ‘Hope Springs Eternal.’
Tina’s first YA novel Rivers Edge, Book 1 in the Bailey Series, will be published with Poolbeg Press.
I do hope you enjoy!!
Hope Springs Eternal
By Tina Callaghan
When I was nine, I confided in my mother that I wanted to be a writer. It’s been a long time since that summer day but my first novel, a young adult supernatural thriller, is coming out in August from the lovely people of Poolbeg Press. After the initial excitement, I’ve accepted that this is really happening and I’ve had time to think about what it means, on top of being an actual lifelong dream come true.
Some writers manage a vertical take-off. They write a novel, get accepted by the first agent they send it to, and nab a book deal quickly. This is not the common experience. I, like many other writers, struggled through years of rejection and sometimes thought of giving up. But I didn’t ever give up. I kept on sending the novel out, through the deaths of my parents, through heartbreak and upheaval.
Because this is what you do. You advocate for your work the way you advocate for your child. You never stop believing in its merits and its right to be heard. Most importantly, you must never stop hoping. In the darkest of hours, the remedy is to send the book out again. Call yourself a writer. Join a writing group. Write every day. Remind yourself in any way that works, that your day will come.
A friend of mine made a vision board and put it where she couldn’t avoid seeing it. It reflected back to her the future that she dreamed of for herself. Life is very clever at getting in the way and taking your attention from your dreams and hopes. Find a way to keep the dream close to you.
The act of creating a story from nothing is, in itself, a triumph of belief and hope. If you are writing or have written a book, that is a dream of your heart made
real. Get to work to help it on its way in life. If you want to see a total stranger on a train reading your book, writing it is not enough. You have to do everything you can to get it into the hands of that stranger. It can’t get there by itself.
And we’re back to hard work, dogged determination, and never, ever, losing hope. Up to January 23rd, 2018, I was hopeful. Then a publisher emailed with a three book deal and now I am hopeful for new things.
There may be people reading this who are thinking that it’s alright for her to say all that, she’s got a deal. I counter your argument by saying that two months ago, I did not have one. I am a normal person who spent a long time hoping and working and dreaming. You might look at me now and see me as a published writer, different from you. That is not true. I’m you, two months down the road. I’m you, a year or ten years down the road. What matters is that you continue along that road in order to reach your destination. Luck will play its part. You may or may not reach the place of which you dream, but you might reach another, unexpected place. You will learn from the experience, from writing and bearing up under trying and failing and trying again. You will never know if the place you are trying to reach is just around the corner, so you have to keep going.
Face each day with renewed hope and love for the work and you might just reach the point where everything changes. I like to think of it as the Susan Boyle moment. Susan lived in hope despite many burdens. The audience laughed at her and then she opened her mouth and her heart, and began to sing, and everything changed. The dream finally flew free.
And that’s what has kept me going all of these years. Every single published writer had that Susan Boyle moment, when they went from being a regular person who snatched an hour here and there to make things up because they loved doing it and had to do it to be happy, to suddenly turning a corner and reaching the place they had been looking for so long. I am glad that it took until now because the journey made the destination even more wonderful than I had dreamed it would be.
Whatever your dream, keep hoping for it and working towards it. It can’t come true without your help. Travel hopefully. You don’t know what wonders are just around the corner.
About Tina Callaghan:
Tina Callaghan is a writer of supernatural thrillers for teens and adults. She lives in County Wexford with her partner Joe, four dogs and one cat.
Her first young adult novel, River’s Edge, is coming soon from Poolbeg Press. It is YA rural fantasy set in modern Ireland. It features three young friends, a monk’s curse, re-animated corpses and a trip into the medieval past. (See a not-quite-finished mock up of cover opp…..scary!!)
Tina would be delighted to hear from readers.
Website ~ https://tinacallaghan.com/
Twitter ~ @TinaACallaghan