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I had many expectations when it came to the writing career. What I envisioned was cliche, but it was desirable as well. Yet, what I got was completely different in the beginning. That didn't stop the dream, but I had trouble seeing how it would become a reality. For the writers with great expectations, this piece is for you. Read on!
The beginning of my writing career began with confusion. I wrote one book, mediocre at best, and self-published. Yet, to my naive surprise, it was not an overnight success. My heart on the verge of breaking, I decided to let it be and move on to what worked. A career that had dull prospects and miserable rewards.
We have all experience those darker moments in the beginning of our career. Learning how it all worked was vital, yet I knew nothing and left it at that. My dull work gave me an understanding of how the internet works and with that, the writing world as well. I dropped programming and returned to what I had a passion for.
Now, armed with important knowledge, I had a fighting chance to make a go of writing. I sat down with a new resolve, older and ready to take a risk. After all, the writing career is a risky business. Yet, I knew it was something I wanted to do. You no doubt feel the same if you have embarked on the same journey.
The Second Attempt
Before I get into what worked and what didn't work, allow to present you with a question.
What kind of writer do you want to be?
It is a question that writers never ask themselves when they should. After all, there are more than one kind of writer. If you write now and then, you may consider putting writing as no more than a hobby. If you want to make a real go, get your work selling, you need to be churning out books. A once-off writer is a hobby writer and the chances of success are small.
Yet, there is still a chance.
Nobodies with a book published in the 90's are millionaires today thanks to their book. Recognition is hard to come by, but it also takes a while too. A hobby writer can become famous and achieve fame they so desired. Yet, most will not. When I say most, I mean 99.9% of them will have their books buried before they put on a pedestal.
That is the hard truth too few realise and it is a truth I soon acknowledged in my second attempt.
I decided what writer I wanted to be. I am not the writer who writes now and then, who publishes a book every few years. I have ideas that I wish to turn into entire worlds. So I do and now I write every day.
The Artistic Writer
The kind of writer I thought I would be is hard to explain formally. So, I will paint you a picture.
"An apartment, dark and cluttered. Towers of paper alone the walls and the only light sources the computer and the window. The night light helps illuminate the steam rising from a cup of tea. The second light source is a computer screen, peppered with lettering.
Of the sounds that fill the room, there is only a writer muttering to himself. Reading off the latest draft, wondering what is wrong. He carries on reading until he slows down near the end. He leaps back onto the computer and types what he says. The problems solved and the story finished."
The dream I had in mind is something that I am not alone in dreaming. It is a comfortable lifestyle, despite the discomfort. A creative lifestyle, despite the writer's block. All in all, there is a certain appeal I found in becoming a writer. With that being said, I knew that what I envisioned wouldn't come soon. The only way that mountain could be climbed is if I started and kept climbing.
There will always be days where you struggle to write anything, but if you give up, the top of the mountain only seems further away.
Aside from the challenges that I have faced in that regard, there are also the challenges that come with the work.
The Trials of a Writer
The challenges that come with writing come with every creative career. Whether you are a painter, writer, sculptor or musician, you will encounter the same obstacles. I refer to the mental barriers that need to be overcome. Specifically, I am going to be talking about the barriers that a writer has.
I have called these barriers, the Trials of a Writer.
The First Trial
What I expected from writing was a relaxing career in which I can test my mind. Of course, relaxing moments didn’t appear as often as I expected them to. I went on to write many stories and novels, but the times that I felt calm could be counted on one hand.
The first trials was accepting that to be a successful writer, I needed to find comfort in the chaos.
A torrent of ideas should be met with a torrent of productivity. You cannot calm such a storm by talking it down. If you make any progress at all, you will find at some point you were going in the wrong direction.
Writer as much as you can, when you can. Don't think it takes away from the quality, because quality checking comes later.
The Second Trial
Never, under any circumstances, believe the first draft is any good. The first draft of anything is absolute trash. Yet, it is a necessary evil to bring in this world. The second draft is improved, heavily edited and ready to be read.
Yet, the first draft is the second trial. Writing whenever you can has led you to the big hurdle. Writing a book from beginning to end. The funny thing is, you are most likely going to start over again for the second draft. At least now, through creating the first draft, you can write some amazing.
The Third Trial
You cannot throw your book onto the internet and expect it to sell.
Even writers with a healthy following won't have a great number of sales. What it takes is a large corporate entity to push your work for you through marketing. This marketing will help sell you book and make you money. Yet, making it available is only the first step.
The third and final trial is realising your work has only begun. You now begin the arduous task of pushing your book to the right market. In doing so, you gain more dedicated fans and make more sales.
It is a true and difficult trial to face, but you must face it.
The dream is the first mental image you have of yourself as a writer. Not the picture that media has painted of successful writers, but a picture you created. Do you see yourself making a lot of money? Do you see yourself have a large fanbase? Do you see yourself writing something that will shake the world?
These are all different dreams. As such, they need different courses of action.
Fame is attained through brilliance, money is attained through sales and a great book is attained through passion.
Yet, the real reason you started writing, the real dream, is because you enjoyed writing. You had an idea that drew you into the world of writing. You decided that it would be something more than a 9-5 job. That is why you became a writer.
Whether you do it for fame, money, to create a masterpiece or to simply write your story, you need to work at that dream.
Thank you for finishing this article. I had a lot of fun writing it and I hope you truly enjoyed it. There are many things you will learn from the writing experience and the 150 above are only a few.
As a big thank you I would like to offer you something for FREE!
A writing course on how to improve your main character!
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Thank you very much for reading!
Matthew Dewey, Writer
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