Home » About the author . . .

About the author . . .

A lot has happened since I set up my website and began writing full-time in 2013.  Ideas keep coming.  I still lose sleep.  And there’s more to do than I originally thought.

For one thing, I’ve grown up.  I no longer entertain ideas of a literary agent knocking on my door or a publishing house contacting me for a share of the profits.  What profits?  Am I illucinating?  I haven’t sold anything.  Yet, for the life of me, I can’t get this silly idea out of my head to give up on having a bestseller.

Success.  What does that even mean?  From my vantage point, it always belonged to someone else.  I had been happy for other people for so long that I found it hard to put my arms around success and squeeeeeeeze.  Did I need an out-of-body experience for it to be a part of my life?

One day not too long ago, I sat in my chair (maybe I was lying in bed; I can’t remember) and behind my eyes I saw someone sitting in a crowded room signing autographs.  But it was my hand hurting like crazy.

The insane part of this dream was Tyler Perry and Steven Spielberg fighting for the rights to make the book into a motion picture.

Stop it!

There’s no way you can laugh harder or louder than me.

Oh, and I can’t stop there.  Think on this:  Today, I had the audacity to think Gabrielle Union might assume my character’s role.  Aah, you poor thing.  Hey!  Will someone call an ambulance—No!  Get the men in the white coats—because this girl has gone mad!!

I must be sick in the head!

I think I am.

But if you’re a writer, you understand my madness.  I feel like someone, maybe God, armed me with pen and paper, attached a night light to my baseball cap, inflated my baggy pants then parachuted me from a C-17 and into a muddy ditch.

There’s nothing in this ditch.  No light.  No life.  No hope.  People off in the distance are yelling at me to do something else.  “TRY ANOTHER PROFESSION, Donna.”  “Oh,” hee hee, “what made you want to be a writer?”  (Don’t you just loooove that question.  Take offense every time you hear it.  And stay away from people who ask it.  They cause a great deal of harm to your psyche.)

Wounded writers cry above the noise, asking for help; raising their ink-stained hands through the muddy life of publication, begging and pleading for deliverance.

Why did God see fit to drop me in a profession that can sometimes crucify my self-esteem?  If you know the answer to this question, call me.  My carnal mind tells me that my first mission is to take everything I’ve learned from my writing experience and spill my guts.  No more secrets.  Being mum is no longer acceptable.  Second, to write like my tomorrows are headed for the grave.

If that’s not enough to keep you writing until the wee hours of the morning, nothing will.

Can you imagine someone coming up to you and saying you only have six weeks to live?  What would you do with those precious six weeks?  The last thing most of us would do is sit behind a desk and peck on a keyboard.  Some people might venture off to see the world.  Can’t say I blame them.  But if something of this nature slipped from my lips, I’d only be repeating what’s acceptable, what you want to hear.

Thank God we’re not dead yet, at least not today.  We’re very much alive.  And as long as I have life in this old body, I want to write until I can’t see anymore.  And even then I’d probably search high and low for a Braille computer to write my last scene and fill it with too many adjectives and passive voices.

Can you remember the first excuse you used to put writing off?  You were in high school.  Maybe college.  Perhaps the kids were babies, or you started a new job.  Then the next time you were asked about your dream to be a bestselling author, your excuses sounded like the first, you just rearranged the wording a bit.  And the cycle continued.

Seems there’s never enough time.  Never the right time to fulfill your dream.

Amazing.  When someone wants something from us, we’re happy to stop what we’re doing and give them what they need.  But when you want to feed your passion, you give yourself a healthy dose of excuses served with an over-packed schedule and everyone else’s to-do list.

Something is not right with this picture.

Trust me, the dirty dishes will be there in the morning.  So will the laundry.  The sky won’t fall if you call Harry or Mary and tell them you can’t participate in this year’s softball game.

Since I committed to writing, my whole world has changed.  Everything revolves around my writing, except family emergencies, of course.  Because of my commitment, I’m experiencing success.  God is so good to me.  Patient.  Liberal with his gifts.  In spite of myself.  Above all, he’s given me his stamp of approval and it no longer matters what people tell me.  What more can I ask?  I praise him all the time for his goodness.

I began by setting goals.  Some were outlandish, but hey, I had to start somewhere.  Then I scaled back my goals to something achievable, sensible.  When I experienced success with a little, I raised the stakes.  And, oh boy, you won’t believe what God did.  I’m writing for a magazine.  I’ve self-published my first book on Smashwords.  It’s FREE!  Contributed to an anthology (Waiting for Messiah; my story entitled, In Full Unity) which was published in September 2017.  Preparing a novel for solicitation.  And I have three others competing for my attention.

I never had a desire to write a short story.  Matter of fact, I didn’t think I could do it.  I’m long-winded.  But you already know this.  I didn’t think it possible to reduce 25,000 words to 15,000.  And please know my pain when I found a site requiring no more than 500 words.  Okay.  I’m doomed!!

Before me was a mountain I didn’t think I’d ever climb.  A long-winded person needed to write a short story and keep it to a precise word count and have a happy-ever-after ending.  Hmm.

After many rewrites, I did it!

To have a media outlet of any kind express they look forward to reading your work is astounding.

Want to know what success feels like?  You just felt it.  Need to feel it again?  Start writing.  But you must know this truth about me—if no one had ever said a mumbling word, I’d still be writing.  I would have simply written my book and placed it in the hands of those I love and those who “tolerate” me then moved forward.  That’s how bad I want to write.

I have yet to finish my ultimate goal, though—to complete my family saga entitled “White Castle.”  It’s my dream to place it in the hands of my readers.  This story won’t let me go.  You’re free to read an excerpt from the book on my blog.  There’s an icon to the left of the main screen.  Just click it.

By no means am I an exceptional writer.  I don’t write because I write well.  I write because I can’t stop writing.  I work hard at putting out something that someone can stomach.  And I know full well, even as I get better at writing and hopefully publish the traditional way, I’ll gain some and lose some.  It’s the nature of the business.

As you venture toward your goals, know this—someone, somewhere out there will do and say things to hinder you.  It can’t be avoided.  Take the high road and embrace it.  Use it to push you closer and closer to where you want to be. Write that hurt out of your soul until you can’t feel it anymore.

I will never forget the hate I received after giving a critique.  The woman called me at least four to six different names and accused me of being holier than thou.  “Just who do you think you are?” she asked.  The door hinges rattled.  I shook.  I couldn’t think.  Blocked me so I would never critique her work again.

In the end, what the woman gave me was enormous strength.  She has no idea she made me weak.  This weakness gave birth to humility, opened me up and allowed God to empower me.  Try to move me off my foundation now.

I want you to also experience this euphoria of writing.  I want you to reach beyond your dreams—to aim for the moon then receive the whole blasted sky and universe combined!

You don’t need to be an expert.  You don’t need a Ph.D., MFA, MA, or the like.  Those are nice.  But it’s not essential.  Let me be the first to break the news to you.  All those rules they’re telling us to heed to, many of those precious degree-holding souls break them too.  What many won’t tell you is:  you must know when to break the rules and how often.  The only credentials you need is belief in God, good work ethics, a willingness to study your craft and heed to the best advice out there.  God will light your path, and place you where you ought to be when you need to be there.

No matter what your endeavors, you can succeed.  Today is the day.  Come on!  You can do this!

Have a happy journey!

Donna B. Comeaux
Freelance Writer, Poet, Novelist
http://www.awriterfirst.wordpress.com


1 Comment

  1. I love your style of writing with just having read sections of your author site, not your “writings” just yet. I would truly love to be a part of your critiquing group and / or friend in writing. I couldn’t help but even tweet about you just now “And as long as I have life in this old body, I want to write until I can’t see anymore. – Donna Comeaux”, which has just been favorited by Tablo Publishing. I would even like to invite you to participate in short story writing, though they are a bit longer than 500 words – yes, those really short ones are hard. If you have a few minutes, go to http://www.linkedin.com/groups/Writers-750-4731526?home=&gid=4731526&trk=groups_most_popular-h-logo and join the group. Heather Shuldt heads this group. She has taken some of our short stories and published them to her Giant Tales anthologies. I was published in 3 of them last year. They are not big money makers, but you have bragging rights. Writers 750 also upholds strict standards of no bad language or erotica. I have met some great authors of faith in this forum. So I hope to hear from you in the near future.

    Liked by 1 person

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