I am so excited about this year! I wanted to wait until the paperwork was finalized to write my next blog post (because I have some amazing news about where my career is going these days) but something else popped up that I wanted to write about.

Marissa Meyer is now on Twitter! You can find her at @marissa_meyer and on her Livejournal (check it out – she always has the most amazing stuff on her Livejournal). She talks about writing, the many books she reads (I wish I could get through a reading list the way she can), and everything to do with inspiration and becoming a better writer. She’s really nice too! Why am I writing about her in my blog?

Well, aside from the fact that she’s awesome, she just recently signed a book contract for her first novel, Cinder! HOORAY!!!

I was fortunate enough to know her before she got her agent and book contract so I feel a little bit special knowing someone before she gets famous (and she will be famous, you can count on it). The biggest reason I wanted to write about her though is because of something that I am now starting to realize myself. I knew it before but now I am living it, which is a completely different circumstance.

She’s been writing for years, fanfiction first and now her own original stories. Every time I ever check up on her progress, whether it was during NaNoWriMo when she wrought her crazy 150,000 words (I think she was something like the number three person who wrote the most of any NaNoWriMo participant that year), or during her endless updates and revisions for her Sailor Moon stories, I was always in awe of how hard she worked. When she started prepping for her series (there are four books in the series, last time I checked), she had gone to crazy lengths to keep track of continuity, clarity, grammar, plot, characterization… all of it. She had created lists and scene descriptions and highlighted adjectives that she overused and wrote blogs about the writing books she not only read, but also did exercises from. She had betas read various versions, incorporated all of it back into new drafts, worked over those, sent back to betas – all before she had an agent! She went to all of that trouble, did all of that work, because she is just that kind of hard-working person. The quality was the important thing, not just saying “I’m done, it’s good enough,” and leaving it alone.

I am in constant awe of her. She had a day job and she managed to put about 500% more effort into one sentence than I ever did for an entire story. She is constantly doing something – writing, editing, sending queries (before she got an agent, that is), and even now she is so gracious as to write about her experience so that new writers going in can have an idea of what it’s like. On top of that, she managed to keep up fanfiction (again, before she got her agent) and the quality of her work constantly astounded me.

At first, reading her work and then exchanging emails with her made me feel like a slacker. Here I was moaning about having to write a book and she just cheerfully finished project after project, seemingly never ending with her energy and grace. I felt like a wet blanket. But then, I got inspired. I wanted to be a writer, right? I wanted to finish books and get them published too, right? So why was I sitting on my butt admiring all the hard work she was doing? I needed to get my hands dirty too!

Who do you look to as a role model? Who do you want to be like? For me, I’d love to work even a tenth as hard as she does. I admire her professionalism, her awareness of deadlines and timing, and above all else her kindness. She doesn’t have to answer emails from her fans, but she does. She doesn’t have to remember who I am, but she does. I hope that I’ll be published some day soon too, just so I can meet her as a writer. I hope that this continues and I get to meet all my other favorite authors and discover new ones.

It’s a bright new day and a bright new year :) hope everyone is also thinking about their dreams.