Two years ago, I wrote and published a short ebook titled Swimming with The Sharks. It was a 20,000-word PDF file containing stories of my life after graduation—how I got my first full-time job and threw it away, and how I got my second full-time job and threw it away. Ah, life was good.
Two years later, like all writers out there, I Googled my own name to see what the world know about me. (Ahem, don’t tell me you’ve never Googled your own name before.) I found my website, my LinkedIn profile, my Twitter account and this: a Goodreads page on my ebook.
There was a review on it, a good one, and I was excited. I took a screenshot and sent it to my fiancée. He disappeared from the What’sApp chat for two minutes. The next thing I knew, he had straightaway went to Goodreads to rate the book.
My friend, that is what support looks like.
My fiancée hates reading. He doesn’t like words. He can’t remember the last book he read from start to finish, perhaps it was the Bible. He sees me reading a thick book and comments, ‘How can you finish that?’
He’s always been the visual person. His background is in creative design, and he loves photography. Every time we walk past a unique building, he would pause for a bit to take pictures. ‘For future inspiration,’ he would say.
We go to the cinema almost every week. We both love movies. His idea of downtime is sitting on the sofa while watching TV and scrolling countless funny videos on Facebook. My idea of downtime is a good book and a cup of tea.
But he reads my every post.
When I’m feeling down, like when my writing gets rejected or when I’m waiting aimlessly for a reply from an editor, he would assure me, ‘I’ve always known that you’ll do great and be famous.’ Then he would say good things about my writing.
He believes in me, even when I don’t believe in myself.
When I’m celebrating an achievement, no matter how trivial, he would be surprised (or act surprised) and think that it’s such an awesome thing I’ve been doing. He says, ‘Your writing is so good. I can’t write like that. How do you write like that?’ which leaves me smiling to my sleep.
Of course, I know that he might be bluffing, or merely saying the things I want to hear (couples, you do understand this). But perhaps he is not.
Did I ever tell you that it was his initiative to ask for his graphic designer friend to create the cover for Swimming with The Sharks? He read the ebook (or skimmed through it, at the very least), and thought that I was in need of a decent book cover. (I was thinking to just wing it and use my super limited Photoshop skill to whip out a cover.) His friend sent a couple possible versions, and we decided on one.
He does support me, genuinely, even when he doesn’t really ‘get it’.
What I write might be crap or golden nuggets, but along every step I know I’m lucky to have my own private cheerleader. I think we all need it.
Ps. The ebook is free for download when you sign up for my newsletter. Go get yours!
P.Ps. If you’ve read the book, would you oh so kindly show your love and rate and review it on Goodreads?
Photo is used under Creative Commons Zero license.