Do you ever look back and miss 'the old days'? I know I do. (Yes, I know I probably sound like an old lady when I say that.)
I miss getting up, doing my schoolwork, and then going outside to play without anything else in the world demanding my time and attention. I miss looking up at the top of the Christmas tree towering over me and being awestruck (there's just something depressing about unpacking that same Christmas tree one year to find the top of it at your eye level). I miss the days when every book, every poem was new and unread by me. I miss the days when every book I was given to read had been pre-read and screened by my mom, and I didn't have to worry about a good story being ruined by something inappropriate.
I miss the days when my writing was a hobby. Really, I do. I miss having the freedom to work on whatever story or poem I wanted, when and if I wanted to work on it. I miss the days of having an idea and starting on a new story, guilt-free in spite of the half-dozen other projects I had going at the time. I miss thinking my mom had no idea I had tucked a sheet of notebook paper into the back of my history book so I could work on that poem or short story when she wasn't looking. I miss my far-off, shimmering, childish dreams of fame and fortune--dreams I could dream from a safe distance without letting them effect my writing directly. I miss the notion that I would send my book to a publisher, they would publish it, and that would be that... never giving a thought to things like 'platform' or 'marketing'.
Don't get me wrong; I wouldn't change the way things are now. Discovering that the writing I loved so much was God's calling for my life was amazing. Finding writing buddies who could encourage me, help me improve my skills, and keep me accountable has been a joy. Getting that first acceptance letter from a magazine was a moment I'll never forget. Sticking with the same project for the last four years has been tough, but having my first novel at the point where I can start looking for publishers is a milestone I wouldn't want to miss.
Still... sometimes... I just can't help but miss the old days. Sometimes I even have the urge to hide a piece of notebook paper in the back of the book I'm reading. : )
Is there an earlier stage in your writing journey that you sometimes miss?