WRITE WRITE WRITE
We are here because we love to write, right? That rhymes… But no, I’m not a poet or a lyricist. Though I’ve written a few song lyrics, I’m not one for listening to lyrics in music (I like the “articulated vocal noises”) or reading poems so why should I write them? On the other hand, I write just about everything else. Writing is part of my life. Not only do I write my novels, I write short stories, Amazon reviews (624 so far), the Observer’s Challenge for the Las Vegas Astronomical Society, the odd article for other astronomical publications, technical articles, all kinds of entries on the Absolute Write Water Cooler (a writers forum) and Cloudy Nights (an amateur astronomy forum). I also just got elected as the secretary (or as I like to call it, the “sekkiterry”) of the Las Vegas Astronomical Society, where I’ll be writing the meeting minutes as well as who-knows-what.
Folks, “I be doing” a lot of writing! Why do I do it? Because I like to. I wouldn’t have put myself through 17 years of torture, disappointment and failure if my goal was simply to get published. My first and primary goal has always been to write.
Why are you here? Am I sounding like a broken record? I have to bring this up because over and over again, I hear people asking themselves and others why they can’t get published and why they should’ve picked an easier hobby. Huh?
I’ve never considered this a hobby. In a way, maybe it is, except I’ve never spent outrageous amounts of money on gear I didn’t need. Sure, I’ve forked out a few bucks here and there on books I didn’t really need, spent plenty on postage for agent queries, but that isn’t the same thing. My primary goal was to write, and not just novels. I enjoy everything I write, where most people dread it. They consider writing a letter, an article, an essay as a chore or a punishment. If any of that applies to you, you should probably rethink why you’re here.
I’ll compare this all to something I’ve seen in my other passion, astronomy. There’s a creature called the equipment freak. These guys throw themselves into astronomy with a passion. Unfortunately, this passion is for spending money. They’ll spend a small fortune on the latest doodads and end up with a super-expensive telescope they can’t even operate. We finally get a dark night somewhere. They’ll arrive, set this monstrosity up and sit in a chair next to the scope just waiting for people to come around and admire it. They’ll barely look through the eyepiece. If they do, they don’t see the Hubble Telescope-like images they were expecting, and get bored with it. Of course, if you challenge them on their choice of equipment, they’ll almost come to blows over their choice of perfection and specifications, yet they cannot find an object in the sky without the computer control. Soon they move on to ATV’s or something else.
To bring this into our world of writing, are you the guy or gal that has plunged into writing, wrote and self-published a garage full of books you can’t sell? Have you spent a huge amount of money and come out with a poor or mediocre product because you wanted bang for your buck, but didn’t slow down enough to learn what you were doing first? Did you get impatient and take the easy route? Is that what your writing is going to be? That, my friends, is a big red flag telling you that you are in the wrong interest. Let any kind of writing be fun for you.