The Moment I Finished My First Novel: It was the middle of January 1995. Previously, I’d averaged three pages a day of writing but on that day, I finished Waiting for Dead Men’s Shoes in a 15-page dash. I’d never written so much in one day in my life and as I typed the last five pages, tears were streaming down my face. My husband was off skiing for the day and there was a snowstorm going on. With no one to share my accomplishment with, I went for an hour-long walk. For the first 30 minutes, I was all elation. I was 32 years old and I’d just fulfilled a dream I’d had for at least 20 years, ever since I wrote that story in eighth grade about the priest and the nurse and the camel. Was there anyone in the world cooler than me? There was not! I’d written a novel! But as minute 30 ticked over to minute 31 of my hour-long walk, and I turned for home, a voice I’d never heard before started speaking inside my brain. It was a sneering voice and this is what it said, “Sure, you did it once...but can you do it again?” That voice has never left me.