Birthdays make me introspective. I guess that's true for most people, once we get old enough to stop trying to guess what gifts we're getting each year. Big markers always make me stop and think, too.
In September of 1989, a 14 year old Freshman sat down at her first lunch in high school and wished herself somewhere--anywhere--else. Nothing to do. No one to talk to. So how does she pass the time without looking like a friendless geek? She started writing.
Twenty years and several drafts later that story the girl wrote is perched on the cusp of publication, waiting at this moment for the final read through to be completed. It's taken so long the story of publication is an epic in and of itself, probably worthy of being told. High school, graduation, jobs, marriage, children, etc. It happens to all of us but the highs and lows can be gut-wrenching.
I can't claim I did nothing but write for 20 years, so I don't say this book took me 20 years to finish. The original draft--which I still have--took a year and ten months. Not bad, all things considered. I toyed with it for a few years off and on but then ten years ago, after the twins were born, the writing stopped for about 7 or 8 years.
But still, it's been a long road and the story is still worthy of being told. And it's going to knock your socks off, when it has the chance.