Tuesday, March 17, 2015

This is Not a Hobby

I am a writer.  Not someone who writes. Not someone who thinks of cute little stories. Not someone to be pat on the head and sent on my way while the grownups talk.

Yes, I have a ‘real’ job (meaning the one that keeps the lights on and food in the fridge) but so do many many other writers. Just because I am not JK Rowling does not mean I am not a writer.

If you write as a hobby, that is wonderful.  Journals and stories that stimulate your mind and give you a creative outlet are their own version of fun/therapy/yoga/awesomeness. I am not taking away anything from those who write solely for fun.

That is not me. I want to make this a career.  I want to travel to schools and libraries and see kid’s faces light up or make them squeal with laughter.  I want to be the reason they can’t stop talking for the rest of the day and maybe open their minds to more. Maybe it is science, maybe it is cupcakes, maybe the more is just that another book may be entertaining too.

I invest time.  Scheduled time. Equal to or greater than doctor appointments, the gym, and sometimes my child’s practices. (Thank God for a husband who will take over the taxi service to and from practice.)

I invest money. College classes on basic refresher courses and writing classes. SCBWI conferences and Critiques. Travel.

I invest in myself. I love writing, even when I hate it (you know what I mean evil plot bunnies). I want to write. I have to write. I love to write so it must be done.  I allow myself to skip the laundry today because I need to critique a friends work. I cut myself slack when I rewrite the same paragraph seven different ways and still can’t get it just right.  I surround myself with people who support my (maybe they don’t get my writing but they get me so they care).

If this is more than a hobby, don’t call it a hobby.  If you write picture books, don’t say they are just picture books. If you have a goal, go for it, work towards it Invest in yourself and be patient with yourself.

Write on my friends.