Today begins The Author’s Blog, a Monday-thru-Thursday offering on writing, publishing, creativity and life in general, penned by a collection of Author regulars: Brian Mercer, Terry Persun, Megan Chance, Joan Frank, and relative newcomer Noelle Sterne. As editor, I plan to turn these fine writers loose on this broad subject matter, with but this one command: keep it positive.
Why? Because there is much in the world of writing and publishing that we do not know. We do not know who, if anyone, will buy the books and stories we write; we do not know how much money we will make when the books and stories are sold; we do not know if these books will win awards or be well-reviewed; we do not know how many people will attend our readings; we often do not even know how the stories we are writing will end.
And yet, despite all that we do not know, and despite the rapidly changing world of digital publishing, and talk of a smaller publishing pie, and the rate of rejection at literary agencies, and the blockbuster mentality at the largest publishers – despite all this, we do know one thing with absolute certainty: If you are a writer, tomorrow you will wake up and write something with the intention of sharing with your fellow human beings. This is what I will do, and what you will do, and what Sherman Alexie and Stephen King and Toni Morrison will do.
So we must keep it positive. Since we must do this thing, let us do it with as much enthusiasm and optimism and love as we possibly can. The alternative merely makes what we must do harder. Do not talk to me of reality. The only true reality is that we will get up and write. The rest is worry, naming shadows, as if our desire to write were perched upon some shaky tower of praise and financial success that would crumble with enough bad news and send you and it and the whole bright and beautiful and meaningful world smashing into the dust.
So, as the saying goes, write what you know. Know that you are here, that you want to be here, and that you want to fill this here with as many beautiful stories as it can hold.
Write Within Yourself: An Author’s Companion.
“A book to keep nearby whenever your writer’s spirit needs feeding.” Deb Caletti.