28 September, 2011


No, not the TV show, though I've heard it's quite amusing.

I find writing easy. The words flow (most of the time), and though it's tough coming up with good story elements, it's still an enjoyable process.

But people... people are the tough part. I realize that being a writer is not an utterly lonely, isolated process (although it totally can be, what with the rise of Internet self-publishing, e.g. KDP, PubIt!, etc.). But I've never been good with reaching out to people and making contact. Or at least, I'm not good at it now.

I have kids. They take a lot of time and attention. When they're asleep in bed, and I have a chunk of time to myself... well, that's when the wife steps in to suck up my time ;-) Joking aside, once that's done I want to use my free time to write.

It's easy to waste time screwing around on the Internet, and I worry that I'll get caught up in message boards, or something (e.g. the enjoyable Mythic Scribes forums, which I am greatly enjoying. Everyone's really polite so far!), and spend all my time bloviating at strangers instead of finishing my novel.

I spent a lot of time in those kinds of communities when I was younger. Back in my pre-Internet high school days, I ran a BBS from my bedroom, in order to commune with other nerds in the area. It was a great deal of fun, and I spent countless hours tweaking the software and chatting about nonsense. The nature of tying up my phone line (the best gift ever, thanks mom and dad!) meant that the little community we built could only grow so large.

The Internet scales a lot bigger. It's rare to find a good, small, open community that stays that way. If they're too good, they get too popular. If they're too big, you get the same problems you get in any large city: assholes and vandalism. There's a lot of small, open communities that are also useless and boring.

I'm just starting out in this business, but I'm committed to succeeding. Writing fiction is the one thing I truly enjoy doing more than anything else. They say bliss is making money doing what you love, and the FSM willing, I'll be able to some day make a living writing fiction, being my own boss.

It takes a lot of discipline and dedication, and I'm going to get to the point where it takes a lot of community, too. I'm envious of writers when I read their Acknowledegments page and see fifty names. "Good grief," I think. "I don't even know that many people, let alone that many I'd trust to help me with my writing."

Words don't decay. I can write a chapter now and it'll be just as good (or bad) a year from now. But relationships can decay, and that kind of upkeep is scary, and hard. Here's hoping I can get the practice I need.

No comments:

Post a Comment