Posts Tagged With: authors

Why I Don’t Write Full-Time

Deskwork

It’s been awhile since I’ve posted anything on my blog, so I thought I would share this. Actually, I had intended to post this earlier, but well…that just didn’t happen. Anyway, I love writing. It gives me a rush, a reason for living, and a sense of contributing something special to the rest of the world. But as much as I love it, I would never quit my day job and pursue it full time. Sure I probably would have written and published four books by now, but the sacrifices I would’ve had to make aren’t worth it. I’m not dissing full-time writers out there. I have so many writing friends that do it, so I take my sombrero off to them. I’m just saying that it ain’t for me. And here’s why:

  1. I love my job – I’m a grad student and a part-time teacher. Soon I will be a college professor. I love what I do and the people I work with. I wouldn’t trade it for anything.
  2. Computer time – I simply can’t stare at a screen while I hit the keyboard for eight to nine hours a day, everyday. I need variety. I need to get out, get exercise, and enjoy this wonderful place we call Earth. After all, I won’t be here forever.
  3. Don’t want to give up everything else – I play soccer, volunteer, hike, ski, etc. If I became a full-time writer, I’d have to give up some, if not all of these precious things I love dearly. And that ain’t gonna happen consarn it!
  4. Relying on loyalties for income – Many writers make enough on these to live the same life they did when they were working full time. However, your income isn’t always certain. You can have good months and bad months in terms of sales, and sometimes you need some extra funds to offset those “cloudy days”. I just wouldn’t be comfortable having to deal with uncertain income. I had enough of that when I was a travel agent.
  5. I’m in no rush to become a bestseller – I may never even become one! But that’s OK. Even if it takes me another few years before I get my first book out there, I’m happy with the pace I’m following. It’s what works best for me, and I don’t want to change that.
Categories: Writing & Inspiration | Tags: , , , ,

Why I am Going to Hire an Editor

Deskwork

Well, it’s been awhile since I posted anything. Then I thought of something, which I’d been thinking over the holidays. When my stories are finished and self-edited, I intend to hire a professional editor. When I first began writing, someone told me, “We fall in love with our words, and never know how our stories look until someone else reads them.” That person was right. No matter how many times we rewrite scenes, we get so attached to our choice of verbs, nouns and adjectives that we¬†forget that other people will eventually read our stories.

Some authors choose not to consult editors; they’re expensive and some are not as credible as they claim to be. Traditionally published authors don’t have to worry about this, since their publishers have editors. Indie authors, however, don’t have this luxury. They should hire an editor, since they are on their own with getting their book out there. I happen to be going down the indie path.

I debated hiring an editor until recently. I’ve been reading a short story by an author friend whose name shall remain anonymous. This author has self-published two stories and is working on a third. The author also told me they did not go through an editor. As I’ve been reading the story it’s obvious that an editor was not used. There is more telling than showing, as well as grammatical errors, which could’ve been caught by an editor. Furthermore, I found some reviews that noted these weaknesses. I have concluded that I don’t want to end up in this situation. It’s worth the time and money to get your story professionally polished. Hence, I am going to use an editor.

But that’s not the only reason I will use an editor. Other reasons include the following:

  • I need a second opinion
  • I want my stories to be the best they can be
  • No matter how many times I self-edit, there will be errors that I just couldn’t find
  • I’m an indie writer; I need all the help I can get

I’ve read other stories that were not professionally edited. I found numerous errors that irked me, as well as other readers (I’m sure). I don’t want to make that same mistake. As indie authors, we are on our own. Our decision to choose a professional editor can make or break our stories. Sure, you have to do your research on editors and they’ll set you back a month’s rent or more. But in the end, they are worth it.

Categories: Writing & Inspiration | Tags: , , , ,

Should You NaNoWriMo?

That time is about here – NaNoWriMo. It’s the big talk of the town in the writing word. So many of my writer friends have or plan to do it. The process is tedious and the rewards are – well, for me just bragging rights. But I’m sure there are more rewards. What is NaNoWriMo anyway? You sign up on the website and try to write a novel in thirty days during the month of November. How many words? 50,000, no more, no less. Just so you know, 50,000 is the minimum word count for a novel. So you’re likely thinking, “Man! That’s a lot to write in just one month!” And you’re right to think that. It’s a big task, and many people start only to give up half way through November.

So if you want to do NaNoWriMo, you need to understand a few things. It’s a big commitment. 50,000 words in thirty days is a lot of writing, so you need to know how much you can realistically write in that time. You’ll be writing everyday, including weekends, if you want to make the deadline. So you can bet that you’ll be writing anywhere from 1500 to 2000 words a day. You also need to have a lot of free time. If you’re in school full time, you have enough writing to do, so you may want to rethink NaNoWriMo. School is, after all, more important. In general, you’ll need to commit to writing in the evening after work into the wee hours. You may have to write during your lunch break. Another thing is that you’ll have to have your story planned out, or at least know your story and characters enough to carry a 50,000 novel. One thing to note is that NaNoWriMo expects you to write a new story. You can’t write a story that you have been writing before the start date. The organization wants you to write from scratch, and that is the whole purpose of it.

So you should participate in NaNoWriMo if:

  • you can commit to 50,000 words in one month
  • you want to test your skills as a serious writer
  • break out into the writing world and achieve initial recognition
  • you have a solid story in mind and you know your characters
  • you possess strong time management skills

Sadly, I won’t be participating this year. I’m a graduate student and I have enough writing to do as it is. Plus I have a novel and a novella on the go and I like to work on them in my spare time. I hope to try it someday, but it will only be when I know that I can make the commitment. If you decide to participate, I wish you the very best of luck and hope you successful in it.

If you want more information visit NaNoWriMo.

Categories: Writing & Inspiration | Tags: , , , ,

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