Alysun Sanders

Enter the mind of an aspiring author!

A Long Journey….

Hey guys! I hope everyone on the website had a fantastic holiday with family and/or friends! I spent my holiday with my family! We had our typical feast, and then we got to watch the kiddos open their presents! It was a lot of fun just spending time with them. I get to see my family all the time, but most of the year I’ve got my studies to worry about. Having a break is so nice. It’s refreshing, and allows for a break from the many (and often times boring) readings. But this break it allowed for something else. That’s right! I have updates!

So, as many of my Facebook and blog followers know, I spend a lot of my free time writing. Two years ago I published a book titled The Water Nymph, about a teenage boy named Cort who has to face ancient myths in a modern day world. I’ve always had this fascination with mythology, and I used my love for this subject to create my story. I wrote the book in ten months, which is actually pretty fast for me. It’s the first book in a trilogy, and as soon as I finished the first one, I couldn’t wait to get started on the second one.

Shortly after publishing the first book, my family went through a pretty rough time. Writing kind of got put on the back burner for a bit. At that point, I’d already written three chapters. But, due to the crisis in my family, even those chapters were hard to get through. Not only was it a hard time for my family, but it was also one of my hardest semesters in school in the history of ever. Not many of my teachers understood what was going on, and I had a ton of work to do. It was my last semester in Math (which is my worst subject), and also one of my harder semesters in English. With all the chaos that was going on, I somehow managed to misplace my flash drive. On that flash drive were the first three chapters of my new book. The ones I had to fight my way through. So, basically, I had to start over very early on. And while some say that starting over at the beginning is easier than at the end, due to what was going on in my personal life, it was still pretty difficult.

Anyway, my family got through the tough time, and I started trying to pick up the pieces of my second book. I continued trying to fight my way through each chapter, but after about halfway through it I just felt like there was something wrong. And I mean WRONG. I read pieces of it to my friends, and even they thought that it didn’t have the same magic as the first one did. So, halfway through the book, I pretty much decided to scrap it and start over. Yeah, I definitely kept some stuff, but I rewrote over half of what I’d already written. At the same time as I realized I had to rewrite, I had to say goodbye to someone very near and dear to my heart. Someone I think about all the time. Needless to say, at this point in my journey, I was heartbroken.

And then I had the professor from hell, and he completely destroyed whatever confidence I had left in myself. He ripped my papers to shreds, giving me my first Cs EVER. It was crushing, and because of him I began second guessing everything I put onto paper. After that, I kind of put the book down for a bit. I truly believed that I had lost my creative spark, which had been a piece of me since before I started kindergarten. I somehow managed to pass the professor from hell’s class (with a C… ugh!) and then I forced myself to reflect on everything that had happened in the last year and a half. I’d suffered so much stress, a huge loss, and a crushing blow to my self-confidence as a writer. At this point, I really just wanted to give up altogether.

I took the summer off, and spent two and a half weeks in Southern California with my boyfriend. It was a lot of fun, and I think that’s what I needed. I went there to say my final goodbyes to the person mentioned above, but I think I found something while I was down there. I found that I’m actually pretty brave, when I want to be. I got on a plane by myself and flew over a thousand miles away from home. Then I stayed there for two and a half weeks, which is the longest I’ve ever spent away from home. It was totally scary, but I did it. And I had fun. I spent time at the beach, and I ate A LOT of yummy foods and met some incredible people. I also got to spend some time with some other people that I missed terribly. It was a fantastic trip, and I think realizing that I had inner strength helped to rebuild my self-confidence. Shortly after my trip, I began writing again. I started a new semester, and I was pleased to see that my papers were actually getting better. I ended this semester in mid-December with straight As. Once the semester was over, I sat back down at my desktop and got back to work.

On December 28, 2014, at around 9 o’clock at night, I wrote the last words of The Damned Goddess. It felt so good. I printed it out immediately, and it sits on my bed right now in a beautiful black binder. Sometimes I just hold it, unable to believe that I did it. I finished it. And now I’m sitting here thinking about all the things I managed to get through since publishing The Water Nymph. I suffered stress, and loss, and crushing blows to my self-confidence. But I also found strength. And that strength is what allowed me to finish my second book. It’s being edited right now, and I hope to have more information really soon. To the people who have sent me messages this whole time asking me about book two, thank you for your patience. I hope, when it is published finally, that it was well worth the wait. Hope everyone had a beautiful holiday!

Love,
~Alysun

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