Ink Spill Follow-up

I think a part of the problem is that I really do wish and hope with all my heart to be a published author someday.

But for one thing, I don’t know exactly what that looks like anymore, with publishing being such a tossed-up thing just now. For another thing, I’m not willing (currently) to do what it takes (or what people say it takes) to pursue that to the end.

I suppose yesterday’s rampage was about trying to convince myself that I can still write, that I’m still allowed to, that I can still even claim to be a writer, even if at this season in my life it does not include trying to publish.

There may be another season, someday, but right now my season is to write.

You can’t go straight from winter to summer (unless you’re in Texas… but I digress…). The trees can’t go directly from bare-branched to fully leaved overnight. The leaves have to come in and grow, slowly, from little pale green timid buds to full grown glossy dark green leaves.

I still want to be published. I don’t believe, at this stage, that I ever will be. But someday I may believe again. I don’t know. But right now I don’t have to. I just have to write. And that is a wonderful reminder which I greatly needed. So I’d like to say thank you to those who encouraged me in this way.

The future may hold something different, but as the fellow says in the Irish song: “Cares of tomorrow can wait till this day is done.”

ottergrouphugI want to give a heartfelt thanks to every person who dropped me a kind word yesterday or today, or earlier this month when I was going through something similar to this with my not winning the Rooglewood contest… or in fact ever encouraged me. I was so touched and uplifted, and I’m immeasurably grateful.

I often forget that I’m not . . . alone. It may sound strange, but I’m a solitary sort of person, and I’ve somehow, impossibly, come to believe that I am alone and have to do everything by myself.

I imagine I’m a lot more like my solitary character Tare in that way than I ever suspected.

bringmeoutBut he and I, together, are slowly beginning to learn that we don’t have to do it alone. That people, incredibly . . . CARE. About me, about him. No matter how little we feel we deserve it, or how difficult it is for us to fathom. We never imagined what could be . . . never could have dreamed that such people could exist and lift us up in such a way. But the Chess Club are there for him, even when he doesn’t know it (he hasn’t learned this yet, but he may, in time…). And you all have been there for me, even when I little dreamed that there could be such wonderful people in the world. ❤

It’s humbling, eye-opening, and very wonderful indeed to feel supported and loved and encouraged, and it is a blessing of a thing beyond words (and we all know how much I love words, so it must be very far indeed) to know you all.

I’m very grateful for all of you. Thank you very much.

26 thoughts on “Ink Spill Follow-up

  1. Yes to everything you said about the seasons! I mean, there’s no great rush to get published. It’s not like we’re in our 90s or something! We have our whole lives ahead of us. May as well enjoy these years and learn to love our writing before putting THAT kind of pressure on us. I’ve only just starting getting sort of serious about getting published like…this year, and I’m still not putting as much effort as I probably should into it. But I love to write, and I know I have time. I think people get so caught up in trying to get published they forgot their love for writing. I don’t ever want to do that, and I think it’s the most wonderful thing you’re refusing to fall into that.

    You should absolutely just write right now. Enjoy this great season of being able to write when and what you want. Trust me when I say, time can drastically change things and perspectives. If you ever want to get published (and only if you WANT to not feel like you HAVE to), I know, without a shadow of a doubt, you can do it.

    And you absolutely do not have to do it alone! I know where you’re coming from. Writing is such a lonely path, and I still struggle with feeling alone in it. But I’m not. I’ve got so many great writer friends behind me. We’re all in this crazy boat together. We’re your Chess Club, and you can’t get rid of us even if you wanted to. ;D

    Thank you for being honest and an inspiration. Enjoy this season, and if you ever need to rant or just talk you know where I am. *huggles*

    Liked by 1 person

    • I mean, it’s true! We are yet young! 😉

      (And for the record, I think you’re doing the perfect amount of effort! 🙂 *cheers you on*)

      Thank you, Lauri! You are always so supportive. ❤

      D'aww, you Chess Club of mine. ^_^

      THANK YOU SO MUCH. ❤ ❤ ❤ *huggles back*


  2. You know, I used to think getting published was the be-all and end-all of writing. Now I’m not so sure. I think what really convinced me of this was when the results of Five Magic Spindles was announced. Not seeing my name on that list… well, to understate things, it was *difficult*. And not just a little bit; it was a LOT.

    I had questions and hurts that day, as well as stabs of jealousy. I wondered if I had wasted my time writing my entry. I had been so hopeful. Mrs. Stengl had said my title was one of her favorites. In the show-and-tell post, she mentioned the setting of my story. And I had thought to myself, “Well, if you don’t win this year, that means you still have all the rights to the story. Then you can work on that fairy tale retelling series.” (Apparently, this encouragement didn’t help in the slightest, seeing as this year’s results were harder than last years.)

    So anyway, I doubted and questioned and wondered. One of my biggest questions was, “Did I waste my time?” And the next day, I got my answer. When I was sinking lower and not even bothering to stave off despair, a glimmer of hope shone. A resounding word shook me to my core.

    It was one simple word, but it came from the voice of God. And that word was…


    To be honest, your Ink Spill posts have really shed a light on this. I wasn’t very aware of it until now. But I had indeed not wasted a single second. I had been able to share it with Tracey and Christine, who both loved it. I had been able to share it with the judge who read my story, and possibly with Mrs. Stengl, if my story made it to the final round. But what was most important were two things.

    First: I wrote it.

    Second: I loved it.

    Nothing else to it. I didn’t get published, but I enjoyed crafting this story, breathing life into my characters. Do I hope to share them with the world someday? Absolutely. But today is not that day.

    I know this comment has been all about me so far, but I hope it still encourages you, Deb. You are not alone. Never are you forsaken, at any given point in your life. We’ve got your back, and God’s got all of ours.

    Keep dreaming. Keep writing. Keep loving what you do. God has got the best plans for you. People may say that often, but it doesn’t make it any less true. When you write, it’s between you and Him, and NO ONE ELSE. For if it is the world you are trying to please, you will always come up empty. (Whoa, that sounds like it should be a quote. XD ) Someone by the name of Oscar Wilde said, “Be yourself. Everyone else is taken.” In a song I wrote once, the main chorus said, “It’s time to stop trying to be someone else/If you wanna soar, you have to be yourself/You need to awake and take a stand/A first-rate you is on demand.”

    So no matter what happens… keep being Deborah O’Carroll. The girl who’s on the road of a writer and is headed for great things. 😉

    Liked by 1 person

    • Oh goodness, do I ever understand that feeling! o.o I’d never submitted to the Rooglewood contests before this year… or actually ANY contest. I felt really awful that day, and I’m so sorry you went through that as well! *feeds you cupcakes* That’s a dreadful feeling. :-/ But your title WAS a favorite, which is something, and you absolutely didn’t waste your time because you are SO right: you wrote and loved it. 🙂 That’s all that matters. ^_^

      And this comment definitely encouraged me. Thanks so much, Josiah! It really made my day. 🙂 I hope you keep writing and being amazing too! Thanks for taking the time to comment!


      • This was your first time entering a contest? I’d tell you it’s the hardest the first time, but seeing what happened to me… 😛 I’m sorry to hear that, though. *accepts cupcakes and starts nibbling on one, then passes another back to you* Wait, did you know which title was mine? For some reason, it almost sounded like you did. But yes, that’s what’s most important. 😀

        You’re welcome once again! I’m glad I could be an encouragement. 🙂 I’ll try my best to do that. 😛

        Just out of curiosity, do you think I could sometime either read your Rooglewood entry, or The Secret of Kedran’s Wood, or both? Because I would like to, if I’m allowed. ^_^

        Liked by 1 person

        • Umm… I think I remember seeing something about it before? Maybe in a comment on Christine’s blog or something… I think you mentioned there something about it and I went and found the post Ms. Stengl had on her FB maybe? *shrug*

          And you could absolutely read my Rooglewood entry etc! I’d be honored. ^_^ Um… though The Secret of Kedran’s Wood is a sequel sooo… I don’t know if you’d “get” it without reading the first one…? But I’d absolutely love for you to read them! I could send you the first one, The Owl of Kedran’s Wood, if you wanted… though it kind of probably needs serious editing since I wrote it a few years ago. 😛 Or you could just dive in on the sequel and let me know if I’m giving too little/too much recap/reference to book one. XD Is there an email I should send them to or… Let me know how you’d like to receive them! 🙂 If you have an email, you could email me at and I can send you a PDF or a .doc or whatever you like. (Or… Tracey also has them. XD)


          • Oh, that’s right! I did mention it on Christine’s blog. I’d forgotten about that. 😛

            Whoops, that was my mistake. (This is my embarrassed face… XD ) I meant The Owl of Kedran’s Wood. I’ll probably read both on Tracey’s email and then send you emails with my thoughts, of which I have no doubt there will be a lot. 😛 But thanks for letting me read them! I’ll probably start with the Rooglewood entry, and I’ll try to begin soon. Thanks again! 😀

            Liked by 1 person

  3. I haven’t read the first post…but, omg, Deborah. THIS IS NOT GOOD. *sends you hugs and chocolate* Honestly I get down about my writing all. the. time. But that does not mean I should chuck my dream. Like I often write about the “wrong” things…things that aren’t popular or interesting to publishers, or to the current market or WHATEVER. And it makes me really sad and depressed about writing because I feel like I’m stressing my brain out over things I can’t control (aka whether I’ll ever be published traditionally or not) and it makes me wonder if I should even be trying.
    But you know what?
    Of course I should. It’s my dream.
    You said: “I still want to be published.” SO THEREFORE I 100% BELIEVE THAT YOU SHOULD BE. And just remember we ALL have sucky times. If you want to be published (and it doesn’t have to be now or this year or next year…just eventually) then I think you will be.
    Don’t let yourself (or anyone else, for that matter) tell you that you don’t have what it takes.
    *sprinkles cake crumbs upon you* ❤
    Let yourself have bad days, but remember you are a writer and author and I BELIEVE IN YOOOOOU.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Aww, thank you so much, Cait! ^_^
      (And I hope you know that it doesn’t matter what YOU write — just write whatever you want, and some publisher has GOT to snatch it up someday because I can tell your writing is amazing, your story ideas are fabulous, and there’s no way you could read ten gadrillion books like you do and NOT absorb the kind of awesome writing that publishers want. *cheers you on*)
      *dances in cake crumbs*

      Liked by 1 person

  4. It would seem I’m a little late to see this post (and your last post) but I just wanted to say: DON”T feel discouraged, Deborah! You’re not alone in all of this, you really aren’t. Don’t give up writing, you have wonderful, beautiful stories to share. Stories that people will love and already love. We believe in you, Deborah O’ Carroll the wonderful writer.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I don’t even consider myself a real writer. I’ve never written a novel and I don’t really have the dedication to do so any time in the future. And from what I can see from this post, your writing is excellent. To be honest, it seems to me that if publishing is the only goal of writing, not just one of them, then the entire venture is pointless. I really admire that you write because you love it, not for money or fame or power, so I hope this season of writing will be inspired 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  6. The Roogle Wood Press contest got to me too! I had worked so hard for it to come to nothing. I got really sad, but in the end we did our best, and that is all that matters.
    I think you have a gift with words Deb, and I think you will be suscessful with your stories. You most likely be published, if you keep pushing and fighting for it. Don’t give up!

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Deborah, you are an amazing and gifted writer and those of us who’ve read your stories don’t need a contest win or a published copy of them to know that! I think everyone gets down about their writing—I know I have—so don’t let anything ever stop you! It’s important for you to write as you feel led to! That is never a waste. Love you, dear friend!

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Hey! I don’t comment on here super often, but I read every post, and I love them. And I just wanted to let you know what these last two posts have meant to me. I read a lot of the Author/Writer posts, too, and I was totally having the same concerns! Or, at least, similar ones. I kind of felt like maybe I wasn’t really a writer. Your Ink Spills just…made me feel better, I guess, to know that other people have the same kind of concerns. So, thanks a bunch. It cleared up a lot of stuff for me. You are super amazing, and I can’t tell you how much I love your blog. And I loved loved LOVED what you said about seasons changing. Because it’s so simple and it’s so true, but sometimes it’s so easy to forget. Thanks for the reminder. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • Aww, thank you so much, Nickel! ^_^ Thanks for the comment, and it means so much to me to know you read my posts! ❤ I'm sorry you were having similar concerns, but glad you feel less alone and that my post could help you feel better. 🙂 Thank you SO much for your wonderful words!! ❤ ❤ ❤


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