Wednesday, March 30, 2011
The writer's life: writing versus writing business
Now, it's not like I hate the business of being an Ahem-Professional-Writer-Ahem. Take blogging: I love it. It lets me crow my opinions at the enormous and vapid space that is The Internet. And I love egotistically petting my stories - whether that somewhat off-putting metaphor means loading my writing into the Submission Cannon for an assault upon the bastion of the editorial elite, proofing them for e-booking, or tweeting about story sales to 'zines. But the fact remains that these activities are pointless if I'm not writing new material and practicing the craft with the intent to write better. So, when I've got ten stories that need submitting, but I'm writing a hot new tale - well, the decision is easy. The hot new thing gets my attention - not only because it's hot and new, but because I've got to lay the eggs to throw, fry, boil or hatch them. (Or... whatever.)
But, more and more, this simple path of action isn't good enough. Firstly, I'm producing more and more stories; that means I have to spend more and more time submitting those stories. I've got to find markets, track the submissions, make sure I don't mix up information... all I can say is, thank God for Duotrope. But, even worse, now that some of my favourite stories are literally burning out of markets, I've got to start self-publishing. Not that self-publishing is bad; just that, this is even more work I have to do to keep going as I writer. I've got to learn e-book formats, put together covers, proof the texts, and blog about the work. And that's before I've even got to setting up a proper publishing website.
It's enough to drive me batty.