When I started writing, I thought I’d to make some money, but that hasn’t happened yet. Maybe I have the wrong attitude. Maybe I don’t care enough about money. No, really, I love to live comfortably, have plenty to eat, a decent car to drive, go shopping now and then. I do like finding pretty, unusual clothes at thrift shops. Still as long as my basic needs are overmet, I don’t get too concerned about making a lot of money as such.
But I have to write. I could stay in my journals, and I would if I had no other outlet, but I do like communicating with all of you—very much. I love writing novels, too. I heard an Indie writer speak one time who had distributed 40,000 of his novels. I didn’t say sold. I don’t know the stats on that, but I do know by now that a person has to work pretty hard to get rid of that many novels, no matter how bad or how good he is. Even the big writers work hard at publicity and marketing. In order to sell books, you have to become known. Sometimes being known can cost money as well as time, energy and effort.
I pay an editor to edit and format my books. I believe most Indie writers do. It doesn’t cost me too, too much to keep ahead, but it does mean I need to make up my mind there will be expenses. And sometimes I wonder whether I’m worth it, or whether I’m really called or whether I’m wasting time and money and putting on airs. But I can’t quit now.
I did try to quit several times. I gave it all up to the Lord, (all except the journaling, and oh, yes, well, poems always came, and I wrote emails and before that nice satisfying letters to send in envelopes, and come to think of it, there were those editing jobs, and the newsletters…but I didn’t consider any of that being published).
Three of the most satisfying things I wrote never made any money at all. One was a poem for a young woman who wanted to send it to a boy she liked, one was an employee who wanted to send a letter to his boss about being suspended from his job, but who lacked confidence in his English. After I wrote the letter, he went back to work. I’m not saying it was because of me, but still, it was good to be part of a successful scribe story. The third was a letter to a judge. We have a couple at church who takes care of a brother and sister who are the man’s cousins. Their parents have been incarcerated for most of their lives. When the mom was released from jail many years later, she took our friends to court to get custody of her children. The friend at church asked if I could write a letter saying he was doing a good job, and it didn’t seem wise to make that change. The kids got to stay.
I’m going to keep on writing as long as I can. Someday I may get a big surprise and turn into a millionaire from it, but possibly not. As long as I feel I’m where I’m supposed to be in my writing I will spend what is necessary to spend. I’ve always felt that we are all teachers. I think God wants us to teach the good news in various ways—the more politely and entertainingly, the better.
I’ve talked to writer friends. One’s supports her writing habit as a court translator. Another works full time at a job she doesn’t like and writes on holidays and vacations. Someone else does editing for pay and, in order to keep her habit going, writes books for publications such as Facts on File, even though her first love is poetry and she’s an imaginative and wonderful writer.
How about you? How do you support your habit? If we’re called to write, and I believe we are, our Holy Spirit will bless us and show us favor. He will supply all our needs according to His riches in glory. After all, maybe it’s not just a pastime or a habit, maybe sometimes it will help people to find the loving Father they’ve been looking for, and that’s when it become something more than our need or a habit, it becomes putting our hands into the hand of God and following where he leads and where he supplies.