Tuesday, April 28, 2015


Jennifer asks questions...

What happens next?

Why is he or she doing this?

Where did that come from?

Is this any good?

Will anyone read this?

Why do I bother?

These questions flit through my head constantly as I write. Okay, some of them stay in my head for longer than the amount of time “flit” implies (for the English bloggers here, the American version of this word means to move swiftly).

I take some of those questions more seriously than others. I’m constantly asking myself “What happens next” and making sure my characters’ answers to that question will actually work. As I write, I’m focusing on my characters’ motivations and making sure they are consistent with their actions. And like many writers, my characters surprise me frequently.

But the other questions, the ones about me, sneak in when I’m least expecting them to do so and I have to remind myself that self doubt is part of being an author, as much as hearing voices in my head is.

That’s why finding two articles yesterday reaffirming the value of romance authors was so heartening. The first article was an old interview with Nora Roberts, the queen of romance. What I liked best about it was her pro-feminist stance. You can read the article here:

The second article stuck up for romance writers, and talked about their value even when the writing industry typically doesn’t. You can read that article here:

So the next time those questions flit through my head, I’m going to remember the articles and the female authors who have come before me.


  1. I think you're right, Jen. Self-doubt is the worst plague. All the other questions are good.

  2. I recognise those thoughts so well, Jennifer. But the doubts don't hang around when I'm writing.

    I read both those articles yesterday, and they are worth the time spent reading them.

    1. No, I get those doubts when I go back and revise! ;)

  3. I've asked all these questions (as well as many more!) - and when I read that Nora Roberts can write a novel in 45 days, my question is, 'So what am I doing wrong?' !!

    1. I haven't a clue how she does that, Paula. I certainly couldn't.

  4. Great links! Thanks for posting them.

    It seems like whenever I finish a book I plague myself with those 'self-doubt' questions. But then I always find myself back at it. Sometimes I think I write more for myself than the two people who will eventually buy my book!

    1. I agree, Debra Because if I don't write for myself, I'd never do it.