Taking Writing Seriously

Hello, friends! It has certainly been a long time. I apologize for abandoning you, but I had school, and about three internal crises. But I’m back now.

So what have I been doing over the past two or three weeks? (How long has it been? Even I don’t remember.) Well, I went home for Easter break and visited my family for the first time since Christmas…that was fun. I’ve also struggled VERY MUCH to write a short story by mixing a modern day family crisis with the fall of the Aztec empire (sadly no time travel involved, sorry). I’m getting feedback on that today from my professor, so we’ll see how that goes. And I went to a job fair. And at that job fair I had an Epic Realization (TM). I need to start…

(Yes, that is my realization-face. Why do you ask?)

I don’t treat writing like it’s an actual job option. Of all the recruiters who asked me what I wanted to do after college, I didn’t tell one of them my actual current dream, which is to live in a tiny apartment with a moderately nice roommate and work a nice day job editing or something, while hiding under the covers and writing novels in my free time.

Partially because I’m salty that I didn’t realize this was my dream until AFTER I spent two years and $60,000 in loans at college. What is life. Why does my brain work this way.

But seriously. Why didn’t I tell anyone? Maybe I’m afraid that they’ll laugh at me, or give me a weird look like “what are you doing at a job fair then,” or a sad look like “ah yes, there goes another delusional millennial down the moldy drain of debt and tears.” Which is probably true. But don’t ruin this for me yet.

The thing is, I’ve never treated novel writing as a viable career option, which is 80% of the reason I went to college in the first place. I understand that yes, I will need a second job (see apartment dream above), but I believe novel-writing can be and is a viable career path in itself and I SHALL BRAVELY FOLLOW.

So as the last two weeks of school wrap up (amen hallelujah), I’m thinking about plans for this summer. Hopefully plans that will send me on my way to making novel-writing my career. And because I know you’re all extremely interested, here they are.

  1. Build a better blogging schedule. I want to try for at least once a week (which I was already kind of doing until Giant Final Projects hit), and since I won’t have as much to do, I might even try to post twice a week. (Gasp!) Of course, summer includes me forgetting what day of the week it is 90% of the time, so we’ll see how this goes.
  2. Take a REALLY good look at my Nano/Camp Nano novel. So my Camp Nano has been a total flop this year, mostly because I wrote 2500 words, got super discouraged, and have not worked on that story since. (Not a normally recommended writing strategy, but we all need breaks sometimes…right?) I was on the verge of scrapping it, but when I went to my Camp Nano page to delete the project and replace it w/ the short story I’m writing for English, something inside of me said… “Look at this one more time. It’s still kinda cool.” So this goal might involve a lot of tears, but hopefully it’ll be worth it.
  3. Write something NEW! Faith, don’t you have 5 or 6 projects you could edit? Yeeees…why would you bring that up? Anyway, what I have in mind isn’t technically completely new. For Camp Nano July 2016, I started writing a time-travel story that I didn’t get very far on because time travel is a butt and I didn’t have the timeline mapped out. But, I still really like the idea so I’ll be going at it again. Screams to follow.
  4. Write something ELSE new!!! Okay Faith stop it! You’re going to die! Look, I have justification for this one. I’ve been wanting to write a fantasy novel for a while BUT I don’t really know how, so I’ll mostly just be worldbuilding. Not writing. You hear that, brain? NOT WRITING YET. Honestly, the amount of energy it takes to keep these brain cells in line…
  5. Reading quite a bit. I have a lot of books on my TBR (most of which are currently eluding me in the void of my memory), and as long as I can get to the good library a few miles from here, I’ll be set. (My school library is quite good for research but very lacking in the novel department.) As anyone who follows me on Goodreads knows, I’ve fallen behind on my 2017 Reading Goal of 52 books, so hopefully I’ll catch up in the months after finals.
  6. Watch Netflix. IT’S NOT PROCRASTINATING IF IT’S ON MY TO-DO LIST, IS IT? I actually just got Netflix and would like to catch up on some shows my friends have been watching so I can be Educated. So it’s a real goal. Really, guys. I’m serious.

Of course, I’ll also be working 40 hours a week at my school’s dining hall, and socializing when I have the chance. (I do that. I’m an ambivert. Sue me.) Not to mention planning my trip to Spain this fall, and who knows what will happen to my goals when I’m abroad. But we’ll cross that bridge when we come to it.

TL;DR: I wanna start treating my writing like an actual career. So this summer I’m gonna woman up. Hopefully.

(Inspiration for this post comes from Hannah Heath’s recent post that inspired me to give up and then un-give up on my NaNo novel, and from Nate Philbrick’s resolution to write 500 words a day before work. Maybe I’ll do this too. Even if it means getting up at 5 am…)

 

Stay crazy, friends.