“You should never mix your passion with money.”
“If you want to be a good writer you can’t focus on the money.”
“Don’t think about making a decent living, it’ll get in the way of what you love.”
YOU MEAN TO TELL ME THAT GREED CAN DESTROY MY LIFE?? OH MY WORD! THANK YOU FOR SUCH HEAVY WISDOM! THIS IS DEFINITELY NOT SOMETHING EVERY CHILDREN’S STORY HAS TAUGHT ME SINCE I WAS A SMALL BABY! CLEARLY YOU ARE WISE BEYOND ME AND KNOW SO MUCH MORE ABOUT THE WRITING COMMUNITY THAN I! HERE I WAS WITH MY LOWLY 4 YEAR DEGREE IN THE SUBJECT THINKING I KNEW A THING OR TWO ABOUT WRITING LIFE!
Who doesn’t want to be the next JK Rowling or James Patterson or Veronica Roth? We all want to be successful doing what we love. Yet, there are always those who tell you that you can’t do it. I run into this A LOT with writing although I think it’s true of most creative endeavors. People ‘warn’ me that if I’m not careful I’ll kill all my creativity and start to hate writing. I don’t really get why so many people think that if you make art that you’re some kind of fragile snowflake who needs to be protected from themselves. Like if they don’t warn you of the basic principle that loving money is gonna bite you in the butt then you’re going to run yourself into the ground.
I KNOW I will most likely never be rich, much less rich off my writing. I KNOW it’s hard work to make money off writing/art. I know what I’m getting myself into here. But don’t tell me that I shouldn’t even think about trying to make money off my writing.
I’ve spent basically my whole life writing and making my writing better. I have spent countless hours reading about, analyzing, and understanding how to write. I paid thousands of dollars to go to a university where I could learn even more from people far more experienced than I may ever be. I have WORKED HARD to write and I will NOT be told that everything I have accomplished so far, every late night paper, every annoyance, every failed draft, every frustration, every finished story, every completed poem, every lesson learned, every dollar spent, was only for my personal enjoyment and I shouldn’t expect to make money.
People don’t say these things to those who want to be accountants. People don’t say it to those who want to be biologists, or doctors, or forensic pathologists. Those people have passion for their work too but are rarely warned about the dangers of making money. Yet writers, painters, etc. we’re told that we can’t expect much. It’s not about hard work for us apparently. Nooooo, if an accountant loves their crappy job they may be obsessed but they’re also driven and dedicated. If an artist loves their crappy job they’re eccentric and obsessed and they’re not seeing the bigger picture and they should get a ‘real’ job.
I don’t even want to be rich. It’d be nice (I mean, come on, tell me you’ve never fantasized about being incredibly wealthy!) but it’s not a necessity. I want to make money off my writing. I want it to be realistic, tangible. I’m working hard toward that goal. Writing is a real job and I’m not a sellout or stupid for wanting to make a living doing it. It is my passion and wanting to make that into a living doesn’t make it any less of that.
I finished Mogworld and am currently reading: Wolf Stalker by Gloria Skurzynski and Alane Ferguson
(I feel like I bit off a little much starting the year with a book over 400 pages long so I’m scaling back and going to read a few shorter, easier reads this week and next.)