I think the answer to this is YES. It helps to have a little insanity. Why else would we keep writing, always staying positive even when we hit the low spots? Real writers keep writing and never seem to give up no matter how many times we meet rejection.
I read an article by someone awhile back and I was thinking ‘boy, does this hit the nail on the head’. I’m definitely like this, always thinking my current work is better than the last one and THIS ONE IS IT, the one that will sell more copies than any other will. I’m always eternally optimistic like this.
Of course, these days, not as many of us send off queries to publishers, or at least I think this is getting to be less common with self-publishing becoming more popular. We have to face the facts that the chances are slim that any of us will end up with a publishing contract with a big publishing house. Meanwhile, we’re all getting older as we wait for a response from the bog boys that may take months, and will probably be an adamant no, in which case we start the process all over again. I can go on and on with dozens of reasons to abandon the query process and self-publish your book.
Aside from all the previous problems I mentioned, if you self-publish you could keep more of your royalties. Today, we have to do our own marketing regardless.
But, even if we choose this route, what keeps us writing even if we know we won’t sell a single book? Way down deep, I always have that impulse to keep going when all seems bleak and useless. There is always that spark that says ‘I won’t give up’ and ‘I feel so good about this, it doesn’t really matter if anyone else likes it as much as I do’. This is the way I am. There’s no denying that. I never really get discouraged because it seems to be enough to get my story out there. I have never planned to make a living writing anyway. If I ever do, that will just be icing on the cake because I really love what I do.
When a ‘normal’ person looks at this, I’m sure they think I’m irrational and delusional. I know my partner does because he tells me I live in a fantasy world several times a day. I’ve heard this so much that I almost believe it myself, although I know this isn’t true I have a vivid imagination and a lot of drive to do my best and keep striving toward that goal, which is writing, even if it’s against all odds.
With so many writers out there, it is almost impossible for anyone to find me on the internet. It’s a case of constant marketing, which I’m not very good at in any way. I’d rather be writing my next book, which I know will be the ONE, and better than all the rest so far. I rewrite and polish, and publish, and then start the process all over again. Many times, I’m doing this before I have entirely finished the last masterpiece.
It’s a writer’s life and I like it quite a bit, and hope I live long enough to write at least another dozen books, as I always have stories flooding my mind.
“The ones who have been published are the ones who don’t quit.” I’ve seen this quote in several places and I agree with this, whether you’re waiting on the traditional publisher or self-publishing your work. It all takes endless determination to make it through the process.
I think I’ll always have this disease called ‘irrational optimism’ because it seems to filter into all areas of my life, not just in my writing world where I spend most of my day When I’m on a deadline, I always feel I can do it, no problem. I even tell myself that I’ll get it done somehow, even if I know deep down that I won’t. Those thoughts keep me going to the end I guess, with anything I do.
It’s time to get off my unicorn now and join real life for a while. Until next time, enjoy the journey we’re on and keep writing.