The Writing

Some days its everything. Even when its nothing, its something. Its the strangest thing. At times consuming. Other times undermining. When I’m writing daily, consistently, productively I feel healthy. Calm. Good.

When I don’t write, whether its due to procrastination or frustration, I feel almost ill. Guilty. Angry.

A writer friend recently hung up her towel. Retired. She was a young mother. She didn’t feel like she was giving enough to family, not the quality part of her. The quality part went to writing and that wasn’t fair, she thought. The best part of her should go to her husband and children, thus the notice to her editor and publisher that she was done.

I fantasize at times of doing the same. The nights when I’m content just being mom, cooking dinner. Those nights I wish I had nothing else to do but cook and clean and tend to my family. It’d be easier to not wrestle with the devil in my head. To not have a heart on fire.

But talking to fellow author and friend Megan Crane (also writing for Presents as Caitlin Crews) about this, she made me realize that the writing is a stabilizing thing. The writing brings order to the chaos. And its true. I’m filled with emotions and stories and layers. If I didn’t get them out, shape them into something solid and creatively good, I’d probably be insane.

God knows I’m already a little crazy. But a little crazy is better than a whole lot crazy.

And so I write. Which is what I’ve been doing every day these past couple weeks and it feels good. I feel good. And that’s enough.

To work.  To write. To build a new world, one where love and hope reigns.


  1. Great post Jane! Stay with the writing! I know most authors don’t realize the enjoyment you send to us readers. I am not sure what it would be like for me without my books. I love going into the book world its like I am in a different place and time, I love it. It gives me joy! Its my intertainment! Bring on your books Jane, we are behind you all the way!

  2. If you retire, the world will already have so much that YOU gave it. But, we would miss you a lot! Even tho we can’t do a lot to help you, we, your readers and fans, cheer for you and send you energy and inspiration. We love you, Jane!

  3. We all have to have something in our lives that sets us apart from being a mother and/or wife. Even if it’s something small, we need it for our mental well-being. Yours is a special gift that I am glad you are not considering giving up!

    The outlet that we receive with whatever we choose for ourselves is well worth it.

  4. To give up your passion would be a sad thing. Times might be tough right now just breathe and strive for a balance.

    I think this is the time when we most need an escape, something that truly makes us happy. DO NOT give up writing.

    It is okay to take things slower, stop beating yourself up. You are an amazingly beautiful talented woman and great mom. Remember that always!

  5. Writing is such a great outlet to express your emotions. For the reader, it is such a wonderful escape from reality. I truly enjoy your writing and look forward to the next book.
    I hope you find a balance between writing and family. I’m sure you are great at both.
    Hope you have another great week!!

  6. Fantastic post Jane.
    I think writing is your therapy just as working in my yards is my therapy.

    I think life in general is a hard balancing act. I saw an old friend from High School this morning at the grocery store, and she said what I was thinking “it should be getting easier” we are both 46 and the kids are just about grown and gone.
    I think we all go through rough patches that test our strength. It just seems like lately there have been more rough patches than good.

    Jane ,everyone would miss your stories if you ever retired.

  7. Jane,

    Of course you think of retiring…who doesn’t. But you can’t quit being you. You wouldn’t be happy then either. Writing is a part of you. And as a reader, huge fan, and this may be in my head, friend, I would truly miss your writing. It makes me stronger. It brings joy to my life as do you as a person. I love your blogs as much as I love your books.

    P.S. Who isn’t crazy? We all have some level of craziness in us!!

    Love you bunches!!

  8. Someone with your creativity and heart for writing wouldn’t feel the same if you retired. Time off is always needed and certainly deserved; give it to yourself instead of feeling like you’re “cheating” on your writing. Your family and they love they give (and take) are what makes you the writer that you are–fills your heart with the energy and juice you need to get in there and pour things back out into books.

    Keep on keepin’ on!! We’d be lonely w/out you….

    Shannon in Tustin

  9. I think you probably nailed it with the comment about needing to make something tangible and creative with all your stories and layers. And I have always wondered if it is the layers of turmoil and stress, and the channeling of that energy into stories that makes the best kind of writer?? The emotion, good and bad, has to be where it comes from.

    Anyway, I for one am glad you write and blog! I love to read your stories, and my TBR pile is ever-growing. I work as a librarian in an elementary school and was doing a bulletin board display today to “Celebrate Literacy Everyday” and one of the teachers asked if there was ever a day when I just wanted to NOT celebrate literacy…joking aside, even on days when I don’t have enough time to read, I always look forward to reading tomorrow!

  10. Oh Jane!
    Please don’t stop writing! We enjoy your books and also your blog. It is amazing what you do! and do for us as readers!

    Although I know one day that will all have to change, as things do change, but until then
    we always look forward to hearing what you have to share with us!

    I feel life is a balance and the choices we make, help keep us balanced. Some days can be harder than others, that’s why we appreciate the good days.

    Thank you so much for writing!!
    You are truely talented!

  11. Jane,
    Thanks for choosing writing. The insights you have given us about what it means to be a WRITER – and that is what you are, in all caps! – make this blog my favorite. I am so grateful you stick with it.
    It is ultimately good for you and even better for us readers (maybe I should make that all caps, too as I love to read) who look forward to your new books.

  12. Jane,
    I love all of your books! You’re my favorite author!! 🙂
    Maybe, you just need a relaxing break. Keep writing my friend!!

    Hugs, Julie 🙂

  13. “To build a new world, one where love and hope reigns.”

    Yep, that’s why we write. It’s the best legacy we can give ourselves, our families, our readers.

    Write on!

  14. I think sometimes we all think of retiring or doing something different. I think about making a change from “professional mom” to doing somethng else. But staying home and carring for my friends kids gives me time to write and makes me available to my own kids. I know you would miss writing! I know I would and I have. I think it’s the pressure of the business end that is the problem.
    You have what us unpublished writers dream of! The grass is always greener on the other side. You tell a good story and give yourself therapy doing it! I have to say I have been working on my rewrite almost every day and really making progress and I feel so good! Like I am really accomplishing something! I love it. When that is done then to deal with the business end of finding an agent, etc…that scares the crap out of me!

    In the end you have to do what is best for you! I will love you always!

  15. I know what you mean Jane, I feel the same way many times. The difference between you and I… nobody would miss me if I hung up my writing career! 🙂 I have yet to be published though I am trying. I have those days too. I think as a writer we all do. But from me and all of your other fans please shelve those feelings!!!! We love you! I look forward to your books coming out. I look forward to reading your blog and looking at your site. So keep doing what your doing lady!!! You make a lot of us out here happy!


    Micole Black

  16. your books r incredible….i’ve read most of your novels love the characters the intensity of the stories..the sicillian’s defiant mistress blown away with the intensity of your writing…the build up kept me wanting to know why why why and even when i thought i knew the plot wham…woosh…surprised by yet another obstacle….you bring pleasure to a lot of people who i think feel same as me….pls keep writing romance love

  17. Ironically, I am that mother that just gets to clean, stay home, cook, run the dry cleaning and I feel the opposite you do. I feel like I should be giving something more. I feel like I need to make money, be an example to my son that I can do more. I have done the 9 to 5 thing and while I made money, I got no fulfillment so I didn’t want to continue that after having a baby. Daily I struggle with what I should be doing. It sad, isn’t it? The way we beat ourselves up over it? Always wanting something else.

  18. Well said, Jane! Writing is a struggle, especially with my two-year-old and online teaching, but it is my doorway in an earthquake, my bathroom pipes in a tornado. In other words, my solid and safe place.


  19. I think we all feel that way as a mom we need to give 100% to our family. I’m not a writer but I work from my house as a daycare provider so that a job, and you as a writer is a job. I love what I’m doing playing and teaching my little ones just like you enjoy writing. I like your books so I’d miss reading your books for they are about real women in this world but told with alittle humor and good looking guys. Keep writing for it keeps you rounded and thats what makes you that alittle crazy person as you said in your blog. I love ya, carole

  20. I can’t imagine not having the opportunity to read new books from you. Your books bring such pleasure to so many people it must be both a joy and a heavy responsibility. I hope you never quit (as long as it makes you happy). BTW, I rec’d my package in the mail today. Thank you very much. 🙂

  21. I know what you mean! Sometimes I love what I do, but I just don’t like the mechanics of it all! Sometimes, nothing I say feels brilliant or helpful for my patients. But there are some days when I’m grooving right along! But I have to admit, for every person I feel like I don’t help, there are others that I do. And that helps me stay sane! But, for selfish reasons, I hope you do continue to write! I just can’t wait for your next one to come out!

  22. “To work. To write. To build a new world, one where love and hope reigns”.

    you should make that your byline. and mine would say: To read. To enjoy. To live in the new world where love and hope reigns.

  23. I love hanging out with my family but the cooking and cleaning…totally over-rated. So take those “Calgon moments” when you need ’em girl and keep your amazing books comin’!

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