When I started writing, just over two years ago, I had no idea what I was getting myself into. Having been an avid reader for years, I guess I wanted to write a story myself. But I wanted my story to be different. I wanted to write a book that read the way I like to read them. Hmm. It was harder than I thought.
But, whoa! What a rush!
Two weeks after I began writing New Alpha Rising: Ascension Pt. I, a whole new mindset developed. Shortly after that, I was hooked. I mean, badly. I couldn’t sleep and I couldn’t think about anything other than the story. Seriously. My dreams and conscious thoughts were overrun with details and the storyline, constantly.
And just when I thought I’d gotten the story out, more dreams enveloped my mind. A year later, I’d finally finished writing the New Alpha Rising Saga. Oh, it wasn’t and still isn’t fully polished, mind you. But it is written and it is good, to me anyway. I’m talking over one million words, y’all. The keyboard and screen was crack and pipe to me.
Then came Generations Series. At that point, I was writing a whole lot better. That’s not to say that I’m great at it. Not yet. But I was way better at it. So, I submitted Sacred Puppies to agents. Man, I was kicked to the curb like it was cool. Rejections came more regularly than sunshine.
That didn’t stop me. I wrote well and the story is compelling, I believe. So, I submitted Sacred Puppies to three publishers that didn’t require agents for previously unpubbed authors. Well, I got lucky. Really lucky.
That’s when I began to see again. And I saw new things from a new perspective, and I recognized it clearly. I can’t stop writing because it, quite simply, is what I do now. It’s my thing, writing is. My drug of choice and damn thrilling each time I create a sentence. I love this shi…
Still, what I recognized is that, I could write all day every day, but, to what end? You see, when I was able to see again, clearly, what I saw was that this is a business. Yep. A monolithic, titanic, uber-large, super-sized – just a big ole ass business. There’s Vanity pubbing, small pubbing, university presses, ooh – The Big Six. Then I heard about Kindle, B&N, Smashwords, and a whole lot more.
Really? – I thought to myself.
Yes. Really. It’s business. A business with a myriad of business applications.
I could cite several examples of folk who’ve taken advantage of this business. They were like me in the beginning, I’m sure. And when they were able to look up and see again, they saw what I see. Business. Then they acted accordingly.
They built personal profile platforms via several social media outlets. Folks got to know them and hear about the stuff they’d written. Those folk happened to be readers and customers, and they numbered in the millions. They had disposable incomes and they loved to read.
Those unpubbed authors had hit a main artery. Can you say ‘Amanda Hocking and John Locke?’ Guess what? They worked hard as hell. Some methods worked great for them. Others, not so great. But they didn’t quit working hard. And through their hard work, they achieved successes. How they measured those successes is consistent with their values, I’m sure, but they worked themselves forward until luck fell into their wheelhouses. They earned it! (And how great is this? Periodically, John Locke reaches back with innumerable mentions on twitter. They usually come in the evenings or early mornings, when he does them.)
Now honestly, I haven’t read a word of any of their books, but I have read their blogs and interviews. Why? I read them because, like them, I see writing as business. I also wanted to qualify my opinion based upon their successes.
See, I don’t know if I’ll ever sell like them. I’d like to, for sure. But at the end of the day, I still have a lot of work to do. Additionally, I’m not in my twenties anymore and the stories I write are rooted in an age group that I’m growing out of. Hmm. I’d better get hotter.
More to the point, I don’t have a lot of time to piddle around while business continues to evolve and grow. I want to grow with that business. I also want to incorporate as many authors as possible. Why? Well, why not?
I’m jacked up and motivated, and I’ve got energy to share. However, I see a lot of folk, my peers, that are a bit slower in acting than I am. There’s all types of reasons for their inaction, and almost all of those reasons are legitimate.
But nerves can’t be one of them. (In my own opinion) Why? It’s like this: I’m nervous about sharing my writing for the first time, but when I submit that baby to agents and pubbers, dude, I’m trying to get into the bizniss! From that point on, I have to put in work. That’s right, WORK.
And in this business: pubbers, agents, and most importantly, readers expect results. Piss any part of that formula off, and you’ll be back to square one fast as hell. That’s a fact.
So, when I say I want to incorporate as many writers as possible: discovering, strategizing, and then ACTING on new ideas to promote professionalism and expanding our platforms, I’m wholeheartedly serious. It’s imperative. Where I may be slow to act in some way, my peers can all but drag my miserable dumba… along until I can stand and work forward. That’s what partnerships do, y’all.
Sure, I can work as hard as possible and, maybe, meet some success. But that doesn’t match my personal character. I help people and I like doing that almost as much as I like writing. Not to mention, I don’t have all the answers or all the ideas either. That’s the beauty of collectives. Thoughts and ideas come aplenty.
Now, I’m not asking who’s with me. To be honest, I have very little expectation that I’ve gained a partner, other than the ones I already have, from this post. Though, what I’m sure I did is: I refocused somebody. One of you will read this post and you’ll be like me. You’ll pick your head up and see clearly. You’ll see your dreams and then you’ll realize that, to actually make those dreams come true, you’ll have to recognize that this is BUSINESS.
Newsflash – Agents and Pubbers ain’t taking books and manuscripts unless they know they can sell them. Newbies like me are even further behind the curve. But then, with all the outlets available these days, some of the historical businesses and their antiquated ways can be, and are, circumnavigated. Through those re-routes, success awaits some of us, maybe not many. Either way, nobody’s getting to the top of the mountain without a little help. I may not be able to help you, and vice-versa, but I’m willing to bet that someone else can. Most likely, however, you will end up helping someone else out big time. But, if you aren’t there when they reach back, your hand will be missed when those that meet success try to pay it forward/or backward. #justsayin.
I’ll leave this question: will you ever be able to identify every possible opportunity without someone or someone else’s experience to show you the way?