Wednesday, April 3, 2013

04/03/2013 Writing Wednesday!

Greetings everyone! I hope the week has seen you well so far. As I'm sure you're all aware, I am still coloring almost non-stop. I have decided that is who I am now, for better or worse. It's nice knowing that I have breached the 'half-way' point though, so now everything is going to be going down that home stretch to finishing. I'm nervous and excited about this whole thing and look forward to seeing what happens with it.

Now that I'm a colorer (yes, I know that isn't a word, but insanity makes everything better) I have not forgotten my roots are a writer. As I've mentioned before the whole point of this is to get people introduced/interested in my series. I am still working on everything else as much as I can, I am just sad there aren't nearly enough hours in the day to do everything I want to do. This break is not one that I have taken on purpose, though if I were somehow managing to color constantly and write I would be in the process of removing my hands and trying to figure out how to work with little wrist-stubs instead. This is all part of a bigger picture, which is something that writers need to take a step back and look at once in a while, and yes it can potentially be massive and overwhelming, but it doesn't necessarily have to be.

Let's say you decide you want to write a book, and you have the drive/motivation to actually make that happen. Something that you need to ask yourself is; what are you writing for? Are you writing to give yourself a sense of accomplishment? To get your name out there for bigger/better things? To make people happy? All of the above? That is something that is going to determine what your next steps are going to be. If you're writing to feel like you completed something, then once your story is done, congrats! You did it! If you are looking at trying to get your name out there, then also congrats you have a truck-load of work waiting for you. When it comes down to getting everything else figured out, it seems like a daunting task, but some think that because of the internet that it will all be made a bit easier. It is easier in the sense that there are hundreds of options at your fingertips, it's more difficult in that you need to figure out which of those options are going to best suit your needs. Now if you're going through a professional firm such as an agent or a publishing company they will do most of that work for you, and what will be left to you is the social media aspect. If you're doing things yourself, this is where advertising is going to come into play and once again you are going to be crippled by choice.

Once you are decided on how you're going to work your voice out, there are a couple other steps you need to come to terms with. One that is so very important and somewhat sneaks up on you is that not everyone is going to care/like you. For all the 'Likes' or '+1's you get for whatever you do that is great, but also understand that doesn't account for everyone you're trying to reach. In most cases the people that are liking your posts are friends and family (which are wonderful people!) however it's going to be the point where you need to reach beyond them you are potentially going to hit a wall. Now if you are great at PR and a natural socialite with all of the charisma to back you up, first I suspect you are either a robot or a superhero, and second STOP MAKING IT LOOK SO EASY. Reaching out to people you don't know is ridiculously hard because, well, you don't know them or know where they're at to reach them. The other thing is they might not notice or even care about what you're doing, or sometimes they will outright hate it. These are the points where self-esteem is going to get gut-punched, and it sucks so much. Yes it will be hard, and yes you will look to those that have supported you in the past to help pick you up, but the important thing to remember is that you don't know the people that are being negative. You will never know them, because obviously they don't care, which means you are not trying to please them. Chances are they aren't in your target demographic anyway, and there's even a chance they are the dreaded Troll. Don't focus on them, focus on the people that you don't know that have given you support because they will be the ones to spread the word.

The other thing I mentioned was looking beyond your writing. For me it's the ridiculous notion that my series will be made into movies and that Allison Brie will be Amelia Helstrom-Petri in them (seriously, she's played both a gunslinger and had a tiny role as someone with a British accent in Community, also looks pretty much like I pictured her. COME ON!). My realistic one is actually just being able to finish the series and seeing what happens at that point. Now once that happens I will be focused on selling the whole thing, and will likely do some super big pushes to get it all noticed. After that if there's some kind of movie deal or a big publishing company wants to give me roses every day for 10 years, that will make me stupidly happy, however that is so far from today that it's hard to think in those terms. That's the point I'm trying to make; writing takes a stupid amount of time just for one book, to decide that you are going to write a 10-book series, get a movie deal and make all of the world's money is a little ridiculous. Think big, but don't think crazy. Some things are important that you need to take them in stride, and I'm not saying don't make those long-term plans, but focus on the bigger ones when they are a little more in reach. Sometimes it's really scary for someone to put all the pieces together and see where the future leads them, and writing shouldn't be like that. It should be something you enjoy no matter what and if it scares you or causes you to be mentally/emotionally crippled in some sense it's not doing that at all. Remember why you're doing it in the first place and hold onto that feeling, or the feeling you had when you hit 'Publish' for the first time and saw the cover of a book (digital or not) with your name on it. That is what will drive you.

Thanks everyone for stopping by again. I'm sorry it was so long, but apparently the more awake I am the more I can collect my thoughts. I really hope all of this made sense too. For now I will leave you to it, and as always I encourage discussions and such as well. I'll be back on Friday for my normal review, hopefully I won't be too far crazy by then. Have a good rest of the week!

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