Wednesday, March 9, 2016

There is a lot of talk rumbling around about the amount of authors who are leaving the business.  It is sad, but not unexpected. Over the last few years there has been a surge of new writers putting out their stories. Many are self-published and many are with publishers.
Usually reality hits about 2 weeks after their book is released. That's the time a writer finds out they aren't going to suddenly be a millionaire. So the writing of the 2nd book starts if it hasn't already  started.
If they are smart, the writer has already joined social media and is talking to other writers about promotion. I am a firm believer of not spending any money. I promote my work, I don't pay someone to promote it. I don't understand why a new writer would. It is possible to build up a fan base by working hard, being nice, and having a story people like.
Promoting takes time and takes a writer away from writing.
Then there is the breath stealing moment at the end of the first year when you go and see your accountant. The best advice I was ever given was when a fellow author said don't spend any money you receive in royalties that first year.  My moment actually came this year. I became so busy writing that I missed my mid-year appointment with my accountant. Man, I should have made that appointment. Now I'm paying the piper (government) and following my accountants advice to the letter. Some success brings a whole new burden business wise.
The business side of writing take a writing away from writing.
So the new writer makes it through the first year. What has he or she found out?
Answer: Writing is harder than it looks and is a constant learning process. Improving your writing is the key to keeping readers. By the 3rd or 4th book a writer realizes this is a job. Promotion is a must and takes a lot of time. Following the accountant's advice is a pain in the butt. A writer's house will never be clean again. To keep on a sort of schedule you will need to write 7 days a week.
In the end, for a lot of people this become too much.
I sometimes envy Mr. B. He goes to work and comes home. Then he's free to do what he wants. (after his honey due list is done) Me, I write all day and into the evening, weekdays and weekends.
The bottom line for most of these authors that are leaving the business is they aren't making the money they need to, to survive. Eating regularly is a good thing. And I'm sorry. Giving up a dream sucks.
So I've listed all the negatives, or at least some of them.  Did you notice that I didn't say the word glamorous? Writing isn't glamorous. It's hard work that in most cases doesn't meet the minimum hourly wage.
BUT: Weaving a tale that is itching to be told is wonderful. Hitting that send button to submit your work is fantastic. Getting a cover for that book promotes happy dances around the room. The first, "I love your story," from a reader is breath taking. (in a good way) Talking to other authors and working with them is an awesome honor. Would I give it up? NO WAY!!
I think if you go into the writing business expecting nothing, but hoping for the best is the way to go. Sometimes, remarkable things happen.

No comments:

Post a Comment