Wednesday, June 17, 2009
Writers who give up
Sometimes, writers say they give up. Usually what they mean by this is that they give up on trying to get published. It doesn't mean they are going to stop writing. Writing comes as naturally as breathing to most people who write. You write because, well, because. It's a part of you, like your hair and your toenails.
But publishing is NOT as natural. Especially because most writers are introverts. Publishing means you have to let other people see your stuff. They get to touch it and change it. As many writers have said to me when I talk about revisions, "It's not really yours anymore than, is it?"
I still feel like it's mine, but I get their point. Publishing is a joint effort. Writing is solitary, you and your story. Publishing isn't right for all writers. Some people are better off writing because they love to write, not worrying about what the market is or what your editor is going to think.
Because despite all the times you've heard that you should write the book of your heart or that writers don't worry about the market for their next work, none of that is true. Even the BIG name writers worry when it's contract time. It's a crap shoot whether you will be picked up again or not.
As writers we live with this insecurity, not because most of us make a lot of money, but because we all love doing what we do. We all live for the next book, the next words, regardless of whether or not anyone EVER reads them.
It's madness. It's addictive. And it's divine.