Cyber Chocolate

Thursday, July 19, 2007
Don't Quit Your Day Job - Sandy Lender
Sandy Lender Doesn't Recommend Quitting Your Day Job
Or...the joy and insanity of being a writer
By Sandy Lender, fantasy author
Northeast Missouri State University, now Truman University, prides itself on offering a liberal arts education to graduates. I got out in four years with a degree in English and a liberal arts education that has garnered me a 15-year career in magazine publishing and public relations/marketing, but my true passion, the "career" I've nurtured since I was about six years old, is writing. And I don't mean journalism. Yes, journalism and editing are what have paid the bills the past 15 years (and will continue to do so), but fiction writing...oh...fiction writing is what has kept me alive.
It's probably going to be the death of me.
Let me explain. If you're visiting this site, you've probably been drawn here by an interest in books or authors or a writer's lifestyle or something along those lines. Let me give it to you straight. All writers have a touch of insanity about us (this is normal). We usually carry a muse around with us, but this is not always by choice. We complain about characters fighting for their rights, refusing to conform to our wishes in a scene. We go on writing binges that keep us up until 3 a.m. before collapsing next to our computers just to get up and start typing again when the sun blazes in to wake us around 7, skipping meals, showers, potty breaks and phone calls until some aspect of reality forces us out of the writing cocoon. We will tear a room to shreds looking for a pen if an idea has just struck us. And woe to the fool who gets between us and a piece of paper when we get hold of that pen...
Because I've experienced the insanity described above, I've been lifted up by hearing stories of people who have enjoyed my first published novel, Choices Meant for Gods. Now I get to read comments on my page of people claiming Nigel Taiman is "by far" their favorite character, or "I want to be just like Chariss when I grow up," and I feel this lump of pride in my darlings rise in my throat.
That's the joy and insanity of being a writer. You pour your heart and soul into the work; and pray that someone out there likes it, too. Now here's the hard part. People have to read it to like it. They have to know it exists to read it. So you have to get it to them.
Enter the marketing and promoting aspect of the new author's job. I attended the ArcheBooks Publishing's Professional Novelist Workshop about two weeks before receiving my contract for Choices Meant for Gods, and had attended the Naples Press Club Writers Workshop the week before that, so I thought I had a pretty good idea of the marketing nightmare new authors faced. I was ready. Lay it on me, I thought.
Now I'm on the last day of a two-month online book tour I organized myself, contemplating repeating a moderately successful instore book signing at the local Barnes & Noble that I organized myself, and managing six blogs (including for the promotion of my fantasy novel that I've organized myself, preparing a spate of press releases I've written myself that I'll spew forth like water from an erupting sprinkler next week, etc. Do you see a trend there?

New authors are on their own. Unless you have the few thousand dollars it takes to hire a publicity firm/PR agency to send out press releases for you, you're on your own. I don't have a few thousand stray dollars and I don't trust people who charge less than professional rates to do a professional job.
I take hope in the fact that even J.K. Rowling was once in the same boat I'm in now. She was down to her last food stamp as the story goes when that fateful call came: Her little story about a boy named Harry Potter had been picked up. I've already had my call. Choices Meant for Gods is published and out there. Now I need my lottery winning event to propel me into J.K. Rowling and Harry Potter status, but, for right now, I'm going to just keep writing deep into the night and reading those fabulous e-mails that praise Nigel and Chariss. Because making a living at this would be nice, but, truly, the writing binges that result in someone singing Chariss's praises are the real joy and insanity of being a writer.

I'd like to thank my host today for posting this guest blog article. And I'd like to thank everyone who made the CMFG Online Book Tour the raging success it's been. You know that paragraph above where I said new authors are one their own? I'd like to correct that. We actually have each other. Without each of you, the name Sandy Lender wouldn't be all over the internet right now, and readers wouldn't be one click away from to pick up my epic fantasy novel. And new author Sandy Lender is grateful to every one of you.
"Some days, I just want the dragon to win."
Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Labels: , ,

posted by Jan Verhoeff @ 9:26 PM  
  • At 4:09 PM, Blogger Sandy Lender said…

    To Jan et all,
    Again, why did I not know THIS blog was out there? I'm a chocolate FIEND. I know, if you look at my pics on my blog, you'd not guess this about me. I think the calories in the chocolate I consume are the only reason I'm currently alive. And so...chocolate keeps me alive. It's a good slogan.

    The reason I stopped in to view this blog, the reason I found it, is because you were so kind as to post my guest article here for the culmination of the Choices Meant for Gods Online Book Tour. Now I'm going to go tear the kitchen apart for the "secret stash."

    Sandy Lender
    "Some days, I just want the dragon to win."

Post a Comment
<< Home

Pure, delicious, melt in your mouth rich chocolate to entice your taste buds, tickle your funny bone, and enrich your life.
The Chocolate Drop
Sign up here for a
Free Subscription

The Chocolate Drop

A Newsletter promoting Prosperity and Abundance

without Secrecy.

Don't miss a single morsel of chocolate! Get your bite of heart healthy dark chocolate from one of these great recipes! Chocolate

About Me
Name: Jan Verhoeff
Home: Colorado
About Me: This chocolate lover, writer, and artist, from Southeastern Colorado promotes the value of abundance and prosperity in all areas of life. For more information see Secret to Prosperity and get your link to prosperity and abundance.
See my complete profile
Previous Post

Decadent, rich, deliciously sinful Marketing Concepts revealed at Chocolate. Don't miss the flavor of wealth!

Of Interest

Ad Links
Powered by

Free Blogger Templates