Monday April 2, 2018 ~ The Letter B
This month, I write about being a writer, alphabetically.
I’ve written nonfiction, short stories, and poetry. My media has included everything from keyboard to fountain pen to crayon. And yes, I’m working on a novel.
Please join me each day as I explore this craft and career of playing with words as I participate in the Blogging from A to Z Challenge 2018.
The Letter B
Each story, each adventure, every journey has a beginning. When we write fiction, we begin our story with something that draws our readers in immediately. Adventures often begin with the mundane; someone has to plan that big trip or figure out how best to climb that mountain or figure out where best to park when helping frost cupcakes in a kindergarten classroom.
My journey as a writer began with passion; the stories forces their way out of my head without mercy. Compulsion drew me in and I wrote for the sheer joy of it. The beginning of my fiction writing career required the mundane part. I researched and reviewed the business side of being an author these days. I gave serious consideration to the commitment I was considering. I carved out time and learned to use Scrivener. I blocked off time to write regularly. I set goals. Thus began my journey as an author.
In the past, some of my creative endeavors became jobs. My focus changed from the art to the business. And the fun was lost. At the beginning, when I researched becoming a career writer, I struggled with that; I worried I’d see all the joy sucked out of something I loved.
This is a business after all. That means keeping track of expenses, keeping to a schedule and plan, and (scary!) marketing myself and may work. But I found a way to keep the passion and the warm fuzzies and still be a responsible self-employed creator. And that is the next B word…
I still write for pleasure. I can lose hours at they keyboard, perfecting a sonnet that touches my heart. I still journal and keep the family lore alive by getting it down on paper.
I also write for work. Planning and record-keeping and social media and marketing and small business management take up more time than I’d like. But that’s the reality of self-employment. I knew that going in. I have learned to gently remind folks that even if I’m at my house or in a coffee shop or maybe the library, that I’m actually working. This is a job, and as such, commitment. I don’t stop for the day until that day’s work is done.
And I’ve learned that the key is balance.. I’d go around the bend if every time I sat at my desk, it was only to work. Yes, some of my work is fun, but I I keep a (sometimes precarious) balance between work and writing for myself. They’re separate and they’re each worthy of their own time. It isn’t always easy, but it keeps me sane and productive. Maintaining that balance will see me through the long haul.
Tomorrow, the letter C….