Friday, July 3, 2009

The $64 question

Over on my wall at, Ivy asked a big question in one little line. I thought I'd answer it here and on my wall.

Ivy: I wanted to ask you about your experiences in publishing, with agents, query letters etc. How did you start?

Goodness Ivy, Good question. That one line could take days to answer.

Since I am dyslexic, I never imagined being an author. Never even occurred to me. Writing was just something I naturally did, after I finally learned to read and write. I never wanted to be a writer, I just wrote.

My writing career 'officially' started when I needed to fill a class in high school. I looked at the list of options and thought, "Creative Writing - I can do that." I kept taking writing classes and took more at university.

Still no, I had no desire to be a professional writer or published. I was headed for nursing school. I would have liked to have been a doctor, but knew I couldn't afford it. (My senior year of nursing school, I switched to social work - and I really like it.)

I'm not a television person. I wrote short stories at night when the house was quiet. Still no interest in publishing. I think we were married 10 years before my husband knew I wrote. It just wasn't a big deal to me. It was like breathing, not something one thinks about or talks about, I just did it. It is just my 'normal'.

Coming next, the turning point: Kathryn's Beach.

My filedby page and wall:


  1. Hy Nadine!
    Thank you for following my blog! It’s still at the beginning. Hopefully I will have more time this summer to keep it functional.
    Once again, I got to say that your story is so inspirational. If dyslexia is not the ultimate obstacle for becoming a writer (and a passionate reader for that matter), then what is?
    Oh, let me answer that: there is no obstacle at all when you do what you love and what makes you happy!
    Hope you had a nice Independency Day and that the weather served well for a nice barbecue.
    xo, Ivy

  2. Ivy,
    The weather is always lovely in Phoenix. So every day is a good day here.

    I think there is a big difference being born with something to 'overcome' than having an ability, losing it, then overcoming that. I have never known not being dyslexic. I know other people aren't dyslexic, but that really makes no difference to me. I'm happy with me, as me.

    I know a young woman who was born with one arm. She types faster than me, faster than most people I know - and uses a regular keyboard. She cares for her kids, changes diapers/nappies just as fast as anyone else. It isn't a handicap.

    I think it must be harder to have then lose an ability. Mainly because of the grief of the loss. Perhaps also dealing with the self pity.

    But I've had no loss, so this is my 'normal' - dyslexic people are generally more abstract and analytical thinkers. So it has its 'plus' side to it too.

    If I can't easily read something, I past it into a doc or email and change the font to something easier to read - one without serfs, for example. It really isn't a big deal - maybe just a bit slower. Obviously, it works for me.

    The handicap for all of us is in our minds and the minds of others, certainly not in our ability to accomplish things. As you said, you'll accomplish what you want to accomplish. I think people make too many excuses to not take the risk to do things. One thing is to be disorganized, then there is no risk of success.

    But don't think of me as a dyslexic writer, I don't. I'm a fiction writer. The only reason I've even mentioned dyslexia in the first place is because I see parents freak out when they have a dyslexic kid. Then they can't get past that label. Same thing happens with sports, parents can't see the whole kid, just the athlete who makes them proud.

    Anyway, off to trim up a few things in the yard with hubby. See ya!