How to Write about a Time of Anticipation

As I write this, I’m one month away from my due date, the estimated arrival of my husband’s and my first child. At many points in life, we are in a state of looking forward. Anticipation of an event—whether it’s a joyous or devastating one—puts everything in a new perspective. It heightens your awareness, incites excitement or anxiety (or both!), and brings up a lot of emotions.

Whether you’re crafting a fictional story or recounting your own experience, how do you write about a time of anticipation in a realistic, compelling way?

How to Integrate Travel into a Story

I’m not a big traveler. If I want to take a trip, it’s usually to visit family or friends—or to soak up the sun on a beach. Backpack across Europe? Adventure through nature? Not exactly my idea of a vacation. Taking a road trip? Navigating the airport? I usually find it boring, annoying, or downright awful.

But lately, I’ve been thinking about the idea of a journey. Travel is more than just the destination. The process of getting somewhere is often rich with new and memorable experiences. And it has the power to transform us—or in the case of our stories, it’s an opportunity for our characters to reach a turning point, learn, and grow.

What is the Most Satisfying Part of Writing?

Some days, writing is easy. The words flow effortlessly and quickly. You walk away feeling a sense of accomplishment and pride.

Other days, writing is hard. Each sentence takes time, making it onto the page in fits and starts. You do what you can and contemplate deleting it all in the end.

So why do we write? What is the most satisfying part of writing—that part that brings you back to the computer or paper time after time, no matter how challenging the process feels?