After last Saturday I decided that I need more writing friends or I need to spend more time with the ones I already have. A few of my writing friends and I attended a book fair, which was more like a writing workshop, hosted by the Wayne County Community College. Since the event wasn't sufficiently advertised, there was literally no traffic of book lovers to meet and greet with so we authors had a lot of time to do what we love second best to writing--talking about writing!
Talking about writing with non-writers is like talking about raising kids with people who don't have any. In most cases they don't get it or they don't care.
Although I know I'm not alone in this self-publishing struggle, it's easy to fee like I am. Oftentimes I see my writing buds on twitter promoting their work or themselves and I think, "Man, they've really got it going on." Behind that I say something like, "And you just suck." Speaking of myself, of course.
However, after a couple of hours talking about everything I'm comforted that some of them feel just as frustrated as I do. None of us thought that becoming authors was going to be this much work! Most of us fantasized about landing a huge contract with a major publisher and just sitting back bringing our stories to life while the publishing company does all the work pushing the book.
Not only is the none of our lives another writer I met at this event gave me a perspective of being under contract that I'd never considered. As a self-published author I am in total control of what I do or don't do. If I were under contract with let's say Simon & Schuster, that would be far from the case. I'd be mandated to their schedule, not my own. National interviews, local interviews, book signings across the country, etc. Sounds awesome on one end but not on another.
Would I really want someone else dictating my time with my kids? I enjoy the time I'm able to give my kids outside of my regular work hours. I like taking my son to his soccer practice and soccer games. I like taking my daughter to work, picking her up, etc. All that parenting is, I want on my terms.
Next, I picked up a tip about the benefit of writing in other genres. It's helpful with your main genre. And it really is. I hadn't planned it this way but over the last few weeks I've detoured from the novel I'm working on and have been working on an essay project. Honest to goodness, as I've been working on descriptions for the essay, I've been coming up with better descriptions for the novel! Soon as I get a chance to join this writer's writers group, I'm going to add that to my already jam packed schedule.
Lastly, without dragging this post longer than it already is, also I received a suggestion for how to finally get my book on kindle. Yes, I know its as easy as 1-2-3 but I'd run into a problem with my document that had me delaying the process UNTIL my little chat with my writing buds.
The essence of this story: keep your writing friends closer than all others. They're a wealth of support and experiences that can help you AND you will help them too.
LaCharmine (L.A.) Jefferson
Author, Writer, Blogger
Blogs by me:
L.A.'s Literary Love Life@ http://lajefferson.blogspot.com
A Day in the Life of L.A. Jefferson @ http://lajefferson.blogspot.com
All Things Love @ http://all-things-love.blogspot.com
Naturally L.A. @ http://naturallyla.wordpress.com
Surviving Work @ http://survivingmydayjob.wordpress.com
Follow me on Twitter @lajefferson