I didn’t make a post on day one and two, not because I didn’t work on my novel, I busted out a little more than 6.5k words yesterday and 1.2k on the first. Today I worked 10 hours, went to the gym and am now writing this post on my journey and what I’ve perceived in the community around me before I get cracking on today’s writing.
The somewhat naive giddiness of the numerous”Nanowrimo day 1!” made me smirk. I’m not seeing as nearly as many posters today or yesterday… I wonder how many actually worked in the past two days? I saw a great many wax eloquent about their stats and plans on the first day then probably stared at the deliciously infuriating blinking of the cursor for the next two days while telling themselves and others that their ‘writing’ was going good. I decided to put in some work.
Woah there Mr. Hypocrite! What are you doing writing the same type of post now then?
Well, I suppose it’s equal parts my desire to cattle-prod you back into word wrangling (if you’re participating in NaNoWriMo or just trying to write something… otherwise carry on) and to share this progress report of a pretentious perfectionist.
Yesterday was my day off work. Full disclosure: I obtain very little money or fulfillment working in my current day job. So, in pursuit of both money and fulfillment, I made the decision to pursue the elusive goal of lucrative authorship. Before continuing I’m going to say something here that will either enrage or inspire you.
It’s not that hard to write a book.
- Exhibit A: Over 300k books were published in the US; Over a million worldwide in 2013.
- Exhibit B: The average book sells less than 250 copies each.
So the key is not in simply finishing that book and hitting the publish button on Amazon. There are a great deal of other factors that determines whether a book will become a hit or a flop. This isn’t the time to tell you any of those factors and as of right now I feel that I am not the person to suggest any of these things to you. After all, I’ve yet to even publish a successful novel so my ideas are still mere conjecture. It is simply a fact that its much more difficult to write a book that will sell well as opposed to writing a book. Agents and publishers at influential organizations will preach loudly about this: they almost immediately turn down over 90% of all submissions they receive.
I committed the sin of writing more than halfway through a story that stunk. By halfway I mean 60k words. I didn’t want to think it was so bad but as I was trying to connect the beginning with the ending I came up with more plotholes than a block of swiss cheese. So like any rational person who puts 6 months of their time into a work of shit, I scrapped everything except for the setting and took a while off from writing to think about what I wanted my life and my story to look like. The thought of this garbage manuscript used to actually make me feel nauseous but, today, I realized it was a major landmark in my journey.
Since that momentous personal decision to change direction, I’ve made the time investment to learn and practice this craft of authorship. Make no mistake, this is not something I consider a hobby. In fact, I’ve given up all hobbies in the pursuit of reading, writing and lifting weights. In the past four months I’ve read about a half-dozen books each in the following subjects: Marketing, Biographies, Writing, Self-Help, Spirituality and the top selling books in fiction, YA fiction and Sci-fi and Fantasy.
I’ve given up TV, video games and anything else that won’t help me to develop a book series that will be successful. I’ve hand-written notes, scenes and random ideas about my series on over 600 pages in the past 120 days. Within the next 27 days I’m going to finish my novel. I would love to send you a free copy in exchange for your thoughts. Sign up for my email list
This post felt awfully pretentious and somewhat braggy but I hope it inspired some of you. I wanted to share a bit more about my process and the radical change I’ve made to support this goal.