As I wrap presents for my loved ones for Christmas, I find myself musing on the beauty of gift giving. There is a wonderful feeling of joy that comes from preparing a gift for a friend, choosing it, wrapping it, and then the pleasure of watching them open it in front of you.
Writing a novel, revising it in the last pass, is a bit like that. Though I don’t know many of my readers, I work hard to hone my craft and my plot for them, I make sure my characters’ voices are clear and lucid, I make the book the best I can.
Finishing a novel is something like preparing a gift for a friend you will never meet. Writing a book is putting together ship in a bottle, and sending it out onto the waves, hoping that the bottle won’t break, that the waves will be kind, that your ship will wash up whole on another shore.
I am grateful for being able build that ship. The act of creation is a gift, too, and I am happy to receive it.