Tuesday, January 17, 2012

No Regrets

A couple weeks ago after my live critque group was wrapping up, one of the critters said, "If I knew writing a book would've been this much work I wouldn't have started it."

My eyes went wide, and I'm sure my jaw about unhinged itself.

"How about you?" The critter asked, giving me doe eyes. "Would you have started this if you would've known what you know now about writing a book?" I know the critter wanted me to agree with her.

"No," I said. "I can't say that I regret any of it." That was all I had to say to her but I went home that evening and really thought about it. Did I regret writing my book?

I can honestly say, I have absolutely no regrets. However, I do have other things I regretted in my life. Not finishing law school. Marrying the wrong men. Not staying in a certain field of work. My regret list is long, and I can always share the rest later if the spirit moves me. But I can't say I regret writing a book or the other ones waiting on my 4GB drives to come alive or the ones running through my mind as I write this post.

If anything its been a welcoming challenge in my life. And I have to say I love challenges and learning new things. There were so many things I had no clue about, especially about myself.

And I'd like to share those things with you.

1. I learned to organize my time efficiently.

2. I learned proper grammar and sentence structure.

3. I learned about all the different gadgets my computer has and can pretty much finagle my way through it no matter how frustrating.

4. I learned I've got more patience than any saint could ever have. It takes a lot of this to write a book.

5. I've learned how to take constructive criticism and use it toward my stories advantage.i

6. I've met a lot of wonderful and supportive people.

7. I can live my life without television except maybe two of my favorite shows. The Walking Dead and Fringe.

8. I've learned when I think I can't stretch anything else out of my story, I CAN.

9. I've got an eye for detail now and a mind that can think analytically.

10. I can finish a project no matter how long it takes.



If anything, I've got pretty strong writing muscles out of the deal compared to four years ago. I’ve got no regrets, baby.

How about any of you? Any regrets?

That’s all for now folks!

See you all later in the ink!



  1. I've regretted the way a couple of my early books turned out, but with conventional publishing, there are no do-overs. Self-publishing is a different story. If you want to make changes, major or minor, it's all up to you!

  2. No regrets. Patience is what I've learned (and continue to struggle with) the most.

  3. No regrets because I've learned to deal with God's will--but I often wish he would have blessed me with at least one child of my own. I figure I'll have plenty of angel babies in heaven.

  4. No regrets!

    P.S. That chick is mean! lol

  5. No regrets where the writing's concerned!

  6. I have no regrets. Life is what it is - life. My writing goes where I'm directed. By the way, I taught Jillian Michaels how to do it.
    Loved the post. Don't know why so many look for the easy road.

  7. I wish I could have learned things faster. I'm a very slow learner. But no. I stuck with it for over 30 years. Nothing holds my attention, nothing makes me work as hard, nothing else can make me more pleased when I've finished something when I put "the end" on a book.

    Thanks Shelly. You are a gem.

  8. E.J., Sir Wills, Golden, Donna, and Lorelei: I'm glad to see you all aren't quitters.


    Me niether.

  9. There are things in my life that part of wishes never happened, or things I did or said. The thing is, I'm happy with where I am right now so I'd be afraid to change anything.

  10. Very interesting and thought-provoking. I have some minor regrets about classes in college, family stuff, but nothing big. Definitely no regrets about writing except maybe not doing more of it sooner.

    Sarah Allen
    (my creative writing blog)

  11. @Jolene and Sarah: I was totally amazed that someone regretted writing a book because of all the tedious work that goes into it.

  12. I think it's great that you can look back and see all that you've learned in your journey. That is a great journey! :)

  13. Heather: Creating something from infancy to seeing the finished project is quite amazing and a learning experience about one's self.

  14. I regret the fact that I started writing so late in life! All the years I spent "reading up a storm" could have also been writing years! Not that I regret the reading part... :)

  15. Wonderful post, Shelly. I only regret the books I didn't finish, not the ones I did.

  16. I like Jolene's comment. It's true for me too.

    No regrets!

  17. Great post Shelley. It's amazing how much stuff we get from writing, compared to what we put in.

    As far as writing goes sometimes I regret not starting earlier. However, then my path would have been different, I guess the answer is no.

  18. Oh, yeah. Jillian. Kick your butt. That's what I've got to do with my time. I've let myself get pulled into too many things, and it's beginning to take its toll.

  19. I've kept journals for a lot of my life, my regret as far as those go, is to not have organized them sooner into something that I can leave my kids and grandkids..some have been lost over the years..also, I gotta say I love Jillian Michaels! I started working out regulary almost 3 years ago, and I did find inspiration in watching her on the Biggest Loser and the Doctors..

  20. My only regret is that I didn't buckle down and start sooner. I tried and fizzled a few times, but this time I'm determined to keep going and see it all through. I'm thinking perhaps the critter is in the wrong line of work.

  21. My memory is not long enough to regret :)

    Love the moment!

    Great post.

    Wagging Tales

  22. MISH: I feel the same.

    Lynn: I've got more to finish as well. I plan on finishing though.

    M.J.: Good.

    Lydia: I think we all wished we would've started sooner but I guess our lives weren't seasoned to write our stories.

    Eve: I know what you mean. And I also love Jillian Michaels.

    Shannon: I think you're right but she has a beautiful writerly voice.

    Charmaine: Your response was cute.


Let me know what you think.