Writing can be a lonesome job. And most of the time, I’m okay with that. As long as I have pen and paper with me, I can be happy, even joyful, sitting in a corner by myself.

But sometimes the loneliness is harder for me to handle: Days when I’m struggling with a chapter or a story that isn’t working, and I don’t know why. Days when I run across a snarky review (even if there are a dozen wonderful reviews right next to it). Days when I face the fact that what I’m working on may never be published — and that even if it is, there’s no guarantee that the world will smile on it, or even take notice.

Don’t get me wrong. Despite all the down sides, I am very glad to be a writer. It’s a privilege and an honor to have work that challenges me, work that allows me to say what I think, work that lets me share what matters to me.

But this is one of the lonely days.