Thursday, April 13, 2017

I have to remember things sometimes

Sometimes, I forget to enjoy writing.

Which is a funny statement on the surface, because writing is very much my passion. It's definitely the thing that keeps me up at night and drives me from my bed in the morning. It's sort of an impossible task, and I like that about it too.

My troubles with writing all stem from the difficulties associated with Publishing. Publishing has a unique way of making your craft a consumable product that you sell. For us writers, we spend way too much time making sure we are palatable to as many potential readers as possible, and I'm no exception. Before I tweet, I try to remember that a large chunk of my fanbase is very conservative, and I think that's wonderful. Everyone gets to be who they want to be. But knowing that definitely makes me hesitate before posting something polarizing and political--and considering how political my social media feeds have been, that should say something--I have sort of whitewashed many of my stances and beliefs on social media. I definitely don't talk about my family with the kind of candor I would if you were to meet me in person.

As well as combing through my public appearance, publishing has also sort of driven many of the stories I have tried (and sometimes failed) to tell. And that's simply no good. I have driven a story one way to be more on point, and then it suddenly wasn't. I've tried all kinds of things to make my stories fit into the buckets made available (or maybe more appropriately, known) by the market, and it just hasn't worked.

This has been a constant battle for me, and only recently have I come to understand some things about my work. When I have a project and it doesn't sell, or it doesn't get an agent, or it doesn't immediately have a huge selling, I used to think it was the writing. Now, to be clear, poor writing will often kill opportunities, so all writers should spend a lot of time absorbing craft. However, the idea of fit is starting to be a real concern.

I'm gonna go out on a limb and say that I qualify as an odd duck. No really. I'm a little off. I see the world differently, and that informs my writing. Some people like that, some people don't. And that's okay.

What isn't okay is when I try to write my stories to fit in. That's a no go. And I know I've talked about this before, but it's way better to fail as yourself than it is to succeed as a fake. Good luck out there, and some big news is coming soon (sorry, I'm such a tease).

3 comments:

  1. This could be a pep talk aimed at me too, because I definitely hear you on this. Hell, you've encouraged me to go for small presses because my stuff is odd. But I am glad that we both know we shouldn't try to change what we write to fit others.

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  2. And that's why there are publishing alternatives, because there's an audience for everything. That's why many authors are hybrid authors. Their books that fit nicely in a traditional category are published there. The ones that don't but are still awesome, see the Indie market. It's all about knowing where and how to market your work.

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  3. yes, we need to enjoy writing
    and per your last post, i hear ya - just because we're published, doesn't equal validation. i've been querying agents with each new book, but they're all sequels and i don't think agents want to come into a series in progress... i'll keep at it, but i hope to have hope when i write another stand alone. there are pros and cons of sequels - the best pro is when someone is excited to buy the sequel =)

    hope things are well with you!
    loving your drawings on FB!
    Tara Tyler Talks

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