I love writing. It’s something I’ve happily done since I was a child and it feels like an important part of my life, much like having loved ones or eating cake whenever I want. Years ago, when I made the decision to become a full time writer, it felt like a scary choice but also like the right one to make. The years since have been a series of ups and downs. Through having an agent, then not. Through being financially in the black, then the red. Through the glowing write-ups in various publications then bad reviews, I’ve been here. Still writing, still pushing through. Still mostly enjoying it all.
Now, though, it feels like I’m on the cusp of wanting something different out of my writing, or maybe just out of myself.
The younger me wanted to write about sex and adventure and it all felt very organic to do just that. The passionate words flowed from my pen like coins from a good luck slot machine. It felt amazing. Even editing was its own pleasure.
These days, I feel I’m on the opposite end of that. But more about that after the break.
I remember twenty years ago, being new to my adopted city of Atlanta and just wanting to enjoy all the new things. The sight of so many LGBTQ people going about their everyday lives in the streets. The dozens-hundreds-thousands of successful Black people wherever my gaze landed. The amazing food. It was an absolute joy. Back then, my work took a back seat to my enjoyment of the city and my newly created life.
Now, in 2019 I find myself at a similar juncture in my life. In just a few days, I’ll be heading to Spain on my latest adventure. I’m not even sure what type of adventure it is. Romantic? Life changing? Or just a for-now change in locale? Whatever it is, I’m ready. I think. I’m almost packed and have my renewed passport ready for its first stamp. I’m trying hard not to think about the people I’ll miss when I’m off gallivanting en Español but awareness of it catches me off-guard at the best/worst of times. When I’m getting used to being in Madrid and all the pleasures it has to offer, I know I’ll have a hard time sticking to my work schedule but I must, because the books don’t write themselves.
Which brings me back to the other kind of change that’s been happening in my world. So, it’s no secret that I’m a massive romantic. I love the Happily Ever Afters, big gestures, candlelight dinners, and Bicycle for Two tours through tiny villages. At one point in my life, Christopher Marlowe’s “The Passionate Shepherd to His Love” was a fave. Truly. So while as a lukewarm blooded twenty-year old, writing erotic romance was fun and exciting, I find myself at forty-plus gravitating toward the less explicit aspects of love. And as I write this, I feel like I’m telling you something you already know. Still, it bears repeating.
Honoring this change in my creativity, I’ll be shifting gears a bit and writing more romance (with some sensual elements) and less erotic romance. My fingers are already eager to take on the task so I’m hoping to have something sweetly romantic and gay by the end of next year. Which I’ll potentially write from a balcón in Madrid.
In life, change is the only constant, whether for good or not. And I’m doing my best to move with these shifting tides. Overall, it just feels good to still be swimming.