Lately, I’ve had to tell her there wasn’t much to report.
The truth was, I was missing more writing days than I was hitting. But I’m a full-time writer. How could this happen?
When I sat back and took an honest gander at my daily activities (thanks, in part, to the Time Recorder app), I found myself doing everything BUT writing books. Blogging, networking, marketing, balancing the ledgers, etc.
But not book writing.
Writing Isn’t Work (Apparently)
I concluded it was because blogging and networking and marketing and balancing the ledgers all felt like work – and writing didn’t. In fact, I felt guilty for sitting down and creating stories. It was too much fun to be serious work.
For as long as I can remember, it’s always been my goal to be a full-time author. (We’re talking, like, since I was seven.) As I learned the ropes of indie publishing, I heard everyone saying that if you wanted to make a go of being truly successful – especially if you wanted to go full-time – you needed to treat your writing like a business. You needed to embrace the “boring” stuff like marketing and ledger balancing, etc.
Combine that with the fact that I had many voices from my family telling me that “author” wasn’t a real job. To prove to them (and myself) that it was, I embraced the technical sides of my new job and pursued them with gusto.
But the most important part – writing – was falling to the wayside.
So what did I do?
It’s Okay that My Job Is Fun
First, I reminded myself that my income is based, not on my Twitter account, my blogs, or even my ledger; but on my books and how many of them are available for purchase. Hence, writing fiction is the most important part of my job.
Then I reminded myself that I’m lucky to have the most fun job in the world – the job I dreamed of as a child; the job countless thousands of people dream of, whether or not they’ve so much as put pen to paper yet. I haven’t abandoned the business mindset that I need. Marketing and ledger balancing are all still important.
But when writing time hits, I completely switch head spaces. I quit being a self-employed entrepreneur. I forget about the email and the new Facebook page and the bank balances. I silence the nagging voices ringing in my ear, accusing me of not having a real job.
I become a kid again and run away to fairy-tale land. I let myself have fun.
Story creation is the core of my business. No stories, no income; no income, no business. So it’s not only okay to have fun – it’s foundational.
What about you? What’s keeping you from writing?