I spent the last couple of days moving my blog over to WordPress and updating the old pages. I am leaving a bunch of them here for historical record if nothing else. I cut a few that didn’t really add any value, even for me.
It has been fun reading my old posts and seeing where I was in the writing journey and life in general. When I started the blog my oldest was still in high school and my youngest was in second grade. He is now going to be a senior this fall and my two oldest are out of college. One is married.
When I started the original blog I was fairly new to Twitter and hit it at just the right time for a new writer. It was the beginning of the eBook boom and self-publishing was finally becoming a viable way to make a living as a writer, so lots of writers were on Twitter sharing their journey and we made our own little community.
One of the writers, Tess Thompson, has been prolific and she has close to ten books published now. Jamie Gold is still blogging twice a week, regular as the sun rises. I don’t think she has missed a day in nine years. She also has several books published.
Most faded away. I went back to look at the blogs I was following and only a handful are still doing it. Only a handful are still writing. It’s a tough business.
I have since finished a Master’s Degree in writing and also retired from the military after more than thirty-two years. My writing has leveled up several times from when I started as well. I thought I knew what I was doing, but the farther I got into the process the more I realized I needed more education. Hence the Master’s degree. Not everyone needs one, obviously, to make a living as a writer, but I had some big wholes in my prose that needed filled in.
The nice thing is, some of the early posts were on the money and actually gave good writing advice. I did spend a lot of time studying the craft of writing, as well as the business side, both traditional and self-publishing.
Alas, I am not where I thought I would be.
I thought for sure I would have at least one book published by now. I am still writing, but not full-time, like I expected to be. I retired a couple of years earlier than I planned for and took a different full-time job. It pays extremely well. Probably orders of magnitude better than writing would, at least at first. But the plan is still to write full-time, someday. I won’t work in my present job forever. I have no timetable. I live very comfortably and I still enjoy writing. At some point I will break through as a novelist.
There was a point where I almost stopped writing. Rejection is not fun. I had two books finished and started the submission process and all I have to show for it is a spreadsheet filled with “No thanks.” That almost broke me.
I had to go back to my original premise, that the only thing that will stop me being successful is if I stop working at it. I’ve finished another book. It’s light years better than the first two. I have hopes that it will sell. If not, that’s okay. It will see the light of day at some point, even if that means self-publishing it. In the meantime, I persevere. I am working on the next book. Then I’ll work on the next one.
Life is good. Better than good. We will survive all the hooha on social media, and all the political strife in this country. Humans continue to improve our standard of living all over the world. There will always be setbacks. The nature of the economy is cyclic and will continue to be so.
I hope you are doing well. I want that for you. Good luck in your writing!