I have stated many times how thankful I am for the time and inclination to write. During the years I spent teaching and raising a family I clung to the dream of being an author. I tried to squeeze writing in to those busy years and while keeping the dream alive I wasn’t quite able to make it happen. I took a deferred leave to write my first novel and returned to teaching with the dream simmering on the back burner. After retiring early with the sole purpose of finding the time to write I crafted my second novel and after much perseverance saw my first book published and go on to receive some acclaim. The tenth anniversary edition of that first little book was released in October and to say that I’m thrilled is a huge understatement. That being said I will try to put to words the thoughts I had this morning that led me to write today’s blog entry. The real joy of writing for me is the process of actually taking a thought and building a story. On Saturday I indulged myself in listening to the entire audio file of my novel The Wright Retreat. I had been sent it by my publisher to listen to and comment on the draft file as part of the production and completion of the audio version that will be available for sale along with the print and e-book versions . Two of my other novels have been narrated and made into audio books and for that I am thankful. I love that this format is available for people who for whatever reason are not able to pick up the book and read it. I listened chapter after chapter to a story that I crated from a seed of an idea. The narrator delivered a wonderful reading of my work. I cried and chuckled and felt the depth and scope of the story. I anticipated the next chapter as one came to a close. I cared about the story. As I listened I was astounded that I wrote it. Now that may sound vain or ridiculous but the truth of it was that I was overwhelmed with the joy of knowing that the time , the energy and the effort I put in to the months of writing that book had meaning and value. Writing a book is a hard slog and some days one can become discouraged, doubtful and unsure of their ability and their right to even claim the title as writer. There is nothing easy about it but like so much else in this life it just needs doing. Books don’t write themselves after all.