LAT Festival of Books
Last weekend was the second time I had the privilege to attend the LA Times Festival of Books. It’s a free event, and if you’re someone who likes to read it’s a fantastic opportunity to meet other readers and a lot of your favorite authors!
But that’s not what this post is about, the one thing that I felt most acutely at the festival is something that had been nagging at me for the last few months; It had been one full calendar year (and a little more) since I decided to leave the film industry and pursue writing.
My family has been talking to me lately and wondering what I’m doing. A lot of people don’t really understand why I took the leap and decided to do this thing that I’m not particularly trained or necessarily good at doing. I know that my family will support me no matter what, but I can feel their confusion. I know it comes from a place of caring and that all they wish to do is to see me happy. They wonder what I do with my days. Without a steady paycheck to prove that I’m a productive member of society, it seems that some days I’m just in some kind of crisis that they can’t see or understand.
I’m not in crisis however, lately there have been some questions and some struggles, but I don’t feel like I’m ready to throw in the towel yet.
I was lucky enough to be able to sit in on a graphic novels for Young Adults panel at the festival, where Faith Erin Hicks, Matt Phelan and Cecil Castellucci. It was one of the most engaging and entertaining panels of the day. Aside from discussions about craft, one of the questions from the audience was “What was the hardest part of working in Graphic Novels?” And Faith said “The first four years of terror.”
When she said “Four Years” suddenly I didn’t feel so much like I was behind in some way. I have been hustling my ass off all year, and yes, most people cannot see a lot of what I’m doing, but I know that I’m investing and building something. I had been feeling like I SHOULD have more by now, I SHOULD have sold my novel, I SHOULD have sold a screenplay, but instead I was assured by her words that I’m okay, that I’ll be okay and nothing that’s worth doing comes easy or fast.