Writing is a journey, not a destination.

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Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Two Sides

Grace Bridges posted a link this morning about publishing backwards.

I find no fault with the logic. My problem is it puts writing firmly into the "business" category and appears to leave out the "inspiration" part. It could be seen as chasing trends instead of creating your own.

I must tread carefully, lest I be misunderstood.

There is wisdom in finding out what the market wants before putting in the work. Professional writers do this all the time. They send out the query before they ever write a word. Saves time and for the professional, time is money. I'm not knocking it.

But what if my goal is simply to write something, or to write something potentially controversial or unpopular or just plain odd? 

We'll take the tired-from-overuse example of J.K. Rowling. Market research wouldn't have helped her. Trying to build a fan base from the back of her station wagon while writing a book on leftover restaurant napkins would have been a serious waste of time. But Harry was what she had and she did her best with him. Her best turned out pretty good.

I don't intend to be the next Rowling. God forbid, in fact. Talk about out of control. But I do want to write stories I like, and those may not be the best bets market-wise.

I have the luxury of not needing to sell to survive. My next meal is not dependent on my next royalty check or advance, thank you, LORD. To put it in Dave Ramsey terms, at the moment I have a hobby, not a job. I prefer it that way. Publishing is good, but writing must be better. Otherwise, my focus gets all skewed.

As I told Grace, the blog author's main point seems to be get busy or get out.

That point I can support completely.


  1. I sure seem to have kicked up a storm with that link! Whatever gets us thinking, eh...

  2. You certainly did. Apparently spec-fic authors don't like to be put in a to-do list. :)


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