|What I saw as I came home... And yes... I forgot to take the trash out this morning...|
Last night I had the privilege of joining Dom Brightmon on his Going North Podcast. It should go live in February which is exciting. At the end of the podcast, Dom asked me a great question. "What question should a young writer ask?"
I have done several interviews and podcasts. Numerous times I had been asked if I had any questions or final comments. I always took that to be the time to tell people to buy my books and visit my website. By the way... this blog will be here when you get back in case you haven't bought them yet! Just saying....
Dom's question caused me to step outside my own experiences. What would I tell to help a young liker (like myself). What question should they be asking?
I think my answer was solid, even if it wasn't the right answer. I suggested that a young writer should be asking where to find help, mentors, instruction, and other means to learn the craft of writing.
Dom asked me casually what makes a new writer an old writer. It was a longer discussion and you should listen to the podcast when it releases. He is so very insightful. The short was that a new writer is not bound by a genre.
The short was that a new writer
is not bound by a genre.
He or she is really free to write whatever they want. There is no fan base demanding they write science fiction or urban fantasy or southern crime novels. A seasoned, successful author sometimes can be locked in to a genre. I have read JK Rowlings adult novel. It is great. I still flip pages waiting on a wizard. I love some of Stephen King's early stuff such as The Eye of the Dragon. Even if it isn't horror.
So, I think my response was a valid one. A new writer should be asking where he or she can learn and grow. It may even mean experimenting with other genres or styles.
However, as I woke this morning I realized that my response is really the second question a new writer should be asking. The first is, "Who do I have that supports me in my writing?"
"Who do I have that
supports me in my writing?"
I would not have books in print if it were not for my writer's group and their encouragement. They have been such a blessing... and sometimes the necessary kick in the pants.
I also would not be nearly as excited about writing (and I think this is a necessary element!) without my dear wife. That became even more clear today.
This weekend I was set to go to Atlanta for the Atlanta Writer's Convention. A few weeks ago, like much of the world, it decided to go virtual. This was my first conference and my first time to really pitch things I have been working on. I was bummed. In addition, I have not had the time a writer always hopes for this fall to write. I have spent the bulk of my time doing edits when I have not been working my "day jobs" or running around town with other activities.
I took the day off today, presumably to go to Atlanta and check in to my hotel before the conference began this afternoon. Instead, I took my mom some of her favorite apple cider and visited. When I got home I was overwhelmed with not only how much my wife loves me but how much she supports me in my hobby of writing.
She made signs all over the house welcoming me to the Atlanta Writer's Conference! I even had a name tag (I am wearing it now!), a refreshment bowl, and a bathroom appropriately marked "Men." for me to use. It was a small gesture but really made me excited about phone calls instead of meet & greets. It reminded me that I am not attending to impress an agent. I am attending to learn, be coachable, and grow as a writer.
It reminded me that I am not attending
to impress an agent.
I am attending
to learn, be coachable, and grow as a writer.
Someday that may mean I get picked up by an agent or it may mean I continue my relationship with smaller indie presses. Either way, I know my biggest fan is upstairs in her own telecommuting chair cheering me on! Thanks Emily! I love you too!!
Oh... And whoever is in charge of the refreshments, we are almost out of reeses cups. :-)