Wednesday, July 20, 2011
I have some newbie author friends out there who are just about to jump off a bridge because they can’t make a living as an author. They know their work is not only good, but brilliant, yet they still can’t sell enough books to even come close to recouping their investment of time, money, sweat and tears.
Unless you are an author, you can never truly appreciate the work it takes to write a novel. It takes months of research, proofing, editing, more and more proofing and editing, and that’s not the half of it. Creativity takes energy and sometimes the energy just isn’t there. That is called writer’s block and even though it isn’t permanent, the delay causes depression.
That is when an author really has to prove his or her salt. They have to pick themselves up, dust themselves off, and get on with writing yet another chapter – then another and so on until the rough draft is finally finished.
You might ask yourself why someone would go to all that trouble and then have to face the fact that it’s a one in a billion chance that the book will become popular, let alone a “best seller.”
All newbie writers know the odds, yet they try with all their heart and soul to beat the odds. Therein lies the rub – you see, writers are compelled to create stories that take their readers on a journey of discovery, no matter the genre. It’s not like they have a choice. Painters are much the same way; they paint because they must.
When you understand your compulsion, it becomes easier to accept the fact that you were born to write no matter what time in your life you started writing. Grandma Moses was elderly when she started painting and didn’t live long enough to fully understand the impact her work would have on the painting world.
I admire newbie writers because they take that monumental step to fulfill their desire to create. They write the first paragraph and then magic happens; a novel is born. I have come to the conclusion that we newbies share a common bond that will never be broken. So we don’t sell a million books, so what! How many people on the planet have accomplished what we have by writing a novel, let alone two or even more?
Stand tall, my fellow newbies, we can be satisfird with our accomplishments. I am proud to be an author, albeit unknown. I figure when my third murder mystery is completed, I will no longer be a newbie – just an unknown author who still has his integrity.