I’m pretty sure Rebecca O’Connor and I would be great friends if we knew each other. The sentence quoted below is enough to make me think so (she’s a tequila advocate, people!–go Rebecca) but the sentiments she expresses in her post makes me positive it’s true.
I read this post right after my morning walk with my dog, Sophie where I was conversing with myself about my future. It’s been almost a year since I decided to go part time at work so that I could concentrate on my writing. The part time work has dwindled down to next to nothing, and some weeks is nothing. Freelance writing is not going to support me in the foreseeable future. Without a college degree or technical knowledge which would make me an expert in some field, it could be years before that would be possible. If ever. There are a lot of people out there vying for writing jobs who are willing to do it for next to nothing. “Next to nothing” does not pay the electric bill.
As for the income potential of my novel Painted Black, unless I’m lucky–and I’ve never been very lucky–a first novel is more about establishing the foundation of a career rather than earning a living. I don’t expect to see any measurable income made from the book this year. Maybe not ever. The income potential lies in getting book two out. And three, and…. If I’m a very good girl and live long enough, I may actually see royalty checks one day.
So why am I still doing it? Because I’m mad at myself for not doing it earlier in my life when I had more time to build a reputation. Because I love not having a full time job to go to. Because I love my characters and the message I’m trying to convey. Because this is what I want to do with my life, damn it, and I’m tired of being too timid to go for it.
And if that means I may find myself forfeiting my mortgage or selling most of my worldly possessions, then all I have to say is, “Hi, Mom. Is the guest room ready yet?”
So now you are thinking, “Okay, Little Miss Glass-Is-Pretty-Much-Empty-So-Bring-Me-Some-Tequila. So what do you say to someone insane enough to walk away from her day job to write for a living?”