Any Writer’s Slash Storyteller’s Life is Anything but Easy
Let me be the first to tell you I’m only six months into this pursuing my passion for writing journey, but I’ve enjoyed every bit of it. While I wrote the first drafts of Comeback Kid and Lord of Columbia over the past three years, it’s only been my number one priority for a few months.
Before that, it was to become one of the most well-known fitness trainers out there, but I had to admit to myself the obvious: I wanted to make a living from writing more than I did from fitness. Nothing wrong with fitness, but after studying what I study (Deep State, new world order, globalism), writing just seemed the more humane path for me.
However, since embarking on this path and slowly morphing my life from 100% trainer and 0% writer in 2014, to slowly changing my guard (75/25 in 2015, 50/50 in 2016, and 25/75 in 2017), all the way to “pretty much” 100% writer in 2018, I’ve learned two things:
1. I definitely made the right choice, despite considering 2018 my “rookie year.”
2. The lifestyle of a trainer is definitely the easier of the two, but I love complexity, so bring it on!
And that’s what I’m going to touch up on today: The Life of the Writer.
Pop Guys are Dumbasses
Sorry for the harsh title, but what’s funny is no one’s been a bigger critic than my biggest “follower,” the Pepsi Guy. I wish you could all meet him, as I’ve written about the dude several times. Long story short, he’s one of those arrogant minds who believes he’s right on everything.
Here’s his real thought process: If you’re not punching a timeclock and working your ass off, you’re too lazy to work.
Oh, really, Pepsi Guy?
Or perhaps you’re just too ignorant to see through your own stupidity.
Any writer would back me on this one.
Hell, even as a trainer, I’m not making ends meet unless I give my heart and soul to my clientele.
Either way, like I just mentioned, the writer’s life is tough, especially just starting out.
Fun, yes, but beyond tough.
What Writers Do
Okay, so for one, in this fast-paced day and age, you better be coming up with new material. Therefore, I’m releasing Lord of Columbia: Northern Knights a month earlier than planned, but on KDP Select for three months before rolling it over into open publishing.
I’m doing this because come November 1st, Book Two (working title is Swords of Destiny) will be released, again on KDP Select, while Northern Knights goes into the open markets. Come February 2019, Book Three will follow the same path, before I do away with KDP Select come Book Four unless it provides strong dividends in return.
Also, I have Comeback Kid, a much smaller novel, getting released around Decemberish…okay I totally made that word up.
Needless to say, not only am I coming out with new material, but different genres, and a lot of books.
For a few reasons.
But the primary reason is this: I’m an indie-author and I better look at myself as an entrepreneur more than an author, and so should you if you’re going this route. What attracted me to being indie is this: I can run my own business and if I succeed, I can reward myself. If I fail, I only have myself to point the finger at.
Also, owning a business (indies are business owners), we need to learn the business, study the market, and drive our product toward the way customers are buying product.
What if they stop buying e-books and go audio, as some charts have implied?
We better have our books out in audio.
What if people like box-sets more with branded covers?
We better be morphing our products into box-sets with branded covers, as I plan on doing if Lord of Columbia makes it. I’m thinking giving each book their own unique identity before creating a box-set and branding them, which I’ll be hiring a graphic designer for rather than buy premade covers, which I’m doing now.
Traditional Author or Indie-Authorpreneur?
See, here’s the score: If you’re traditional, it means someone loved your work so much that they’re going to pay you in royalties to publish it. However, you’re selling your rights, letting them set your prices, they’re choosing the cover, title, and description for you, and everything else.
Though you’re still doing most of the marketing.
As for an indie, you have full control, and it’s like having your own business…it is having your own business. You’re an entrepreneur, which some in the industry call authorpreneur.
So, are you molded for traditional or indie?
Are you an author or an authorpreneur?
Are you just writing-minded or do you have an entrepreneurial mindset?
This is where my training background comes in, as being a trainer was like me having my own business. I could set my own hours, and train people at my own discretion…that’s until 247 became so corporate they cracked down on us trainers and measured our talent by monthly sales numbers in favor of, oh, I don’t know…. changing lifestyles?
Now, as an indie, sales numbers are of utmost importance. However, I’m not employed by anyone but myself. I have no boss to answer to but me. I can measure my own success in favor of a company measuring success for me, especially at the amount they were paying me.
Again, For me, indie wins out.
But, if you don’t want to worry about cover design, editing, description, title, or any of that, traditional may be the way to go. However, if you’re indie, and you’re successful to have a nice, little budget, you can always outsource much of the work.
I like to keep the writing (obviously) and editing to myself. Many will insist on outsourcing editing, but the Jerry Jenkins Writers’ Guild helped me leave my pride at the door and become a near-perfectionist when it comes to self-editing, something he terms: ferocious self-editing. It’s funny, because when I’m in the library doing my editing, I’ll usually grab one of the Left Behind books he wrote if I get stuck and skim through for an example to make sure I’m editing the same way Jerry would.
What Makes the Writer’s Life a Challenge?
For one, if you’re like me and embarking on your own, you better get used to working without making money early on. Sure, income is going to flow in, slowly at first, heck, perhaps at a snail’s pace at first, but money’s made while you sleep…literally.
Money isn’t made while you’re working, so you can make money while you’re sleeping. You want to make money while you sleep without punching a timeclock? Own a writing/author business.
When Lord of Columbia: Northern Knights is released, the goal is to start working toward a livable income.
Note, I didn’t say the goal is a livable income. That takes time, but start building toward it. When Swords of Destiny comes along, I’m hoping to be partially there. When Book Three comes along, six months from August 1st, I hope to be closing the gap. Meanwhile, Comeback Kid will be in its first stages, too.
It’s all about building slowly.
Remember, the Houston Astros lost 100+ games three years in a row before they built a decent team and eventually won the World Series.
So, if you want to be a full-time writer, something I’ve learned in Year One is to be patient, patient, patient. Make sure that product you’re selling is pristine. Too many writers fail to do this, and now companies like Amazon have noticed and are trying to put a stop to it, as I read an earlier article about them axing less-than-perfect product in the e-book and book market. Good.
Take pride in your product and make it as close to perfect as you can.
I’d like to thank all of my readers for coming across My Freedom Flame, please come back soon.