When I made the announcement that I was going to go back to writing for passion and that I wasn’t going to stress over having a new book out all the time, I had no idea it was going to take months to fully embrace the new direction in my writing life. The greatest battle we face really is in the mind.
By changing my path, I was essentially letting go of a dream. But that’s okay. I’m a firm believer that when God closes a door, He opens a window. Sometimes He’ll put me at the end of my rope, so I can see where He’s leading me. I’ve always been the kind of person who doesn’t get a hint. People need to come out and tell me exactly what they want. I think my husband is a lot better at picking out subtleties than I am. I guess that’s why this writing to passion thing (and everything that would follow in line after it) has been harder to properly embrace.
After taking the advice of the author who made the two You Tube videos I included in the last post, I gave myself permission to do things I haven’t allowed in a long time. For example, I didn’t feel like writing on Tuesday. On Tuesday, I felt like walking. So I got off the computer and went on the treadmill for two hours. Then I didn’t write after that like I normally would. I’m now stopping writing when I no longer feel like doing it. My word count average has gone from 3500 (when I was pushing myself) to 2000. And now I’m doing about 3-4 days a week instead of the full 5.
I don’t know what the future of publishing looks like. Things are so different now than they were when I put my books on Amazon and Smashwords in 2009. Now it’s a pay-to-play game. If you don’t have the money to put into ads or other ways to get exposure, it’s hard to get visibility. I’m not complaining about it. I’m just being realistic. The landscape isn’t what it used to be. It doesn’t do anyone any good to live in denial.
Since things have changed, old habits need to change, too. I’m still learning what those changes are for me. I’m not interested in playing the pay-to-play game. I’m not interested in writing novellas in order to get something out every month. (I did consider it. I even started a story that was meant to be a novella, and it’s already at 26,000 words with a lot more to go.) I am interested in doing a short story here and there for fun, but I don’t want to do that all the time. I’m not interested in spending most of my time on social media because, as an introvert, that drains me. I can only handle social media in small doses. That’s one of the reasons I don’t email right away. I need time to recharge my batteries.
All I really want to do is write and publish my books. That’s it. So that’s what I’m going to do. I don’t know how often a new book will be out. I plan to push back at least one pre-order date as we get later into the year since I’m not going to strain myself to get the book written by a certain time. If the day comes when I feel like God is telling me to stop writing, I’ll stop. I don’t feel He’s leading me that way at this time. I’m going to leave the details up to Him. I don’t know what’s beyond the window He opened for me, but I’m going to find out because I’m no longer going to try to open the door that’s closed.
I’m glad to see you’re enjoying life AND writing. You have to find that balance that makes you happy.
I am feeling a lot more relaxed, which was my main goal. All I know is that writing to market has a tendency to kill the creative spirit. I’ve been doing some research on the topic, and I’m more convinced than ever that once the focus gets to be on money, it changes the way you write. Once you change the way you write, other things follow. I don’t see how anyone can write to market longterm and find it fulfilling on a personal level. Sure, it might make money, and there is satisfaction in making money. But I don’t see how the stories can mean as much to the author as a story that was written for passion.