I go to conventions and conferences, that’s the question I get asked.
“How do you write?”
“How do I write?”
The question can mean all kinds of things. How does one write day to day? Or how does one become — and remain, and simply be — a writer? What’s it like? How to start? How to keep it going? WILL THERE BE BOURBON AND SHAME? (Yes to at least one of those.)
It’s sometimes accompanied by the look of a truck-struck possum.
It may come with an exhortation of bewilderment and exasperation.
A sound not unlike, whuhhh, or pffffffh. Cheeks puffed out. Lips working soundlessly.
This is a difficult question. It’s difficult because you’re you and I’m me. Each writer isn’t a snowflake until they are, and this is one of the ways that they are — we are cartographers of our own journeys, charting the map as we go and then burning it soon after. The way I did it isn’t the way that Joe Hill did it, or Kameron Hurley, or Delilah S. Dawson, or Kevin Hearne, or Heinlein or Dante or that one weird dude who wrote the Bible (his name was “The Prophet Scott” and he had one eye and a romantic eye for tired sheep).
Just the same, I feel like I should draw you a map.