I recently watched a youtube video about the dangers of nostalgia, and I can understand it. We shouldn’t get too wrapped up in events of the past simply because we might miss what is happening right in front of us, or we might reject current opportunities based on outdated values. However, the problem for me is that I forget too much and I need to do what I can to trigger old memories.
Part of my application for my Masters course has been finding people to provide a reference for my application. Of course, I have current lecturers to ask, but I want to make sure I ask the right ones, those that will have real weight and show off my relevant accomplishments. I had a lecturer who looked at my novel in the early days of writing it because she was interested and chose to give up her free time to read it and hold consultations with me to help me improve it. I remember being so happy at the time. I was a fledgling writer unsure if people would accept my work – not just because it was new and I was shy, but the story is quite wacky in its sense of humour and also violent occasionally, which can be a startling combination. Yet, she was driven to read it all and tell me her thoughts. I can’t describe how valuable that is. She hasn’t taught me for a long while so I was worried she wouldn’t remember me to write a reference, but she recently replied to the contrary.
After her email, I started to remember more about that time; our conversations; how she laughed at parts I was worried she would be surprised or disgusted by; most importantly, I remembered that this story had worth and other people thought so too. With its release coming closer I’m getting nervous again about showing it to people and this memory of acceptance made me more confident.
This novel is nostalgic to me. It holds almost a decade of memories, from the games and conversations with friends that helped birth its characters and the early hand scribbled chapters that eventually became act outlines to the final page of the first draft and the amazing time I first saw the cover art made for it. Whatever happens with this book, even if I look back on it and think how rubbish it seems now and how much better I have become, it means the world to me now.
For those who missed my plan on Twitter, I’m soon going to start publishing my novel on Wattpad as a final Beta phase. I will use feedback from that to help shape the final edit. At the same time I’m going to start a Patreon page and direct new fans there to help finance the official release in paperback form via Amazon’s Createspace program. So keep an eye out. I’ll have more information available closer to the day.
What do you think of my plan? Is it a good plan? I planned it.