I never thought I'd be writing one of these long AN's, but I didn't want to put too much at the beginning of the last chapter. What follows here is what I've been attempting to say for a while now. I'll try my best to not ramble too much. Here it goes:
In the book Magical Thinking, author August Burroughs wrote that "The problem with writing a book is that you don't get to choose who reads it." I haven't written a novel here, although the length of this story begs to differ, but I do understand his particular qualm. I know I cannot picks who reads, reviews, alerts, etc., but I am extremely grateful for those who have done those things. This story has been difficult, fun, exciting, and heartbreaking to write. As actors do when they're immersed in a role, I have felt each and every emotion I've written. Every scenario has been agonizing to detail and decipher, yet I need to write in the same way musicians need to compose, artists create, and actors perform. I will forever be grateful for the warm, genuine welcome I received from the CM board. From the very start, you guys were accepting, giving, constructively critical, enthusiastic, and kind. (Way too kind in some instances). I never imagined this story would be as long or as winded as it has been, but I am so appreciative of the many, many readers and reviewers who hung on from the beginning, joined in the middle, or have even just read a few chapters here and there. Whether you've reviewed, alerted, favorited, messaged, or have remained silent, thank you. I cannot even explain how much I appreciate everything. Honestly, this isn't a platitude. This is a sincere, deeply felt, thank you.
I know I made grammatical mistakes, typos, structural mistakes, show mistakes, etc. and you guys took the time to tell me in gracious ways. I've always been the type of person who's too self critical and, that being said, I usually don't like anything I write. When I posted this story, I was always genuinely surprised and utterly flabbergasted by the reviews and messages I received, so thank you. I also owe a thank you to those of you on Live Journal who recommended this story and said such wonderful things about it. I got bored at work one day and, in a slightly neurotic and paranoid mood, I googled my own story. I had no idea that others were reading FFG on fanfiction and referring it to others outside of the site. It was a surreal moment to see that, but I am beyond grateful all the same. I originally wanted to have a section in this ridiculously long AN for individual shout outs. However, I don't want to forget anyone. I've tried to personally reply to each and every review I received, and I hope that's been enough thanks for everyone. Just know, you all have helped this story become what it has and you all deserve to be celebrated. So party on!
I have never been an addict, but my paternal grandparents were in AA for about forty years before their passing. By the time I came along, they had been involved in the program for a long time. While we were not extremely close, I was raised with that vernacular and, from an early age, I was given a strange glimpse into the world of personal demons and lifelong recovery. Often, I used this story to release some of my own real life emotional frustrations, and I am moved, humbled, and flattered that my words struck a chord with so many. I know this story was triggering and difficult to read in some spots. I know I may have stepped on a few toes or a lost a few people along the way. I am deeply moved that you readers were so willing to share personal pains and problems with me. I never imagined I'd be able to connect to others with writing in the ways that you've all shared, but, know, that's been the most rewarding and humbling experience throughout the revealing of this story.
While I was in the process of developing, writing, and posting this story, I was also applying to MFA creative writing programs. It was a process I had done (and been rejected by) before, but that didn't make it any less arduous, daunting, or stressful. Often, I used FFG and FF as a stress reliever, confidence booster and motivator, and, most importantly, as a way to work through issues with various writing styles and techniques. That being said, I was accepted into a MFA creative writing program for the fall, and, although I'm not sure I'll be able to post often once it starts, I do want to thank everyone for the comments, criticisms, etc. Without realizing it, you all were supportive and helpful when I was going through that insanely annoying, difficult, and frustrating process. And, as a side note, I am beyond ecstatic to start classes! :)
Lastly, I think that there are many types of battles, whether addiction, familial issues, financial strains, health problems, traumatic aftermaths, etc. Every one of us on this earth has something, known or not, that digs at us deep down. We all have our pains and issues, but we all have the ability and strength to overcome them. I guess that's what I really wanted to showcase in this story: The world is not nearly as depressing or as dark as it can be. Sometimes, you just have to accept a situation or a person for what it is or who they are. Sometimes, you just have to take a deep breath and wait for tomorrow. And, sometimes, that's all you need to move forward.
Without you guys, this story would have ended a long before this note. Sincerely, thank you.