Thursday, January 19, 2012

What a way to make a living ...

If you've read my recent newsletter, you know that I decided to take a job outside of my little hovel of an office. Yes, I've gone corporate. The company I work for owns oodles of radio stations and keeps me hopping.

But that's not what I'm writing about today.

What I'm writing about is the need for writers to get out of the "hovel of an office" and experience, well, life. That doesn't mean you have to get a 9-5 job, but here's the thing: it's tough to keep up the social skills when you spend most of your days talking to/arguing with/cooing over ... fictional humans.

Not only that, the publishing business is cruel. After spending months and months talking to said characters, usually in a bathrobe or maybe sweats, you're encouraged ... no, wait ... you're EXPECTED to put on nice clothes and actually talk to people. You have to do more than talk to them ~ you have to convince them to buy your book!

For some writers, that might be a breeze, but for many I know, including yours truly, it's a form of torture. Novelists are by nature curious people, but many are also shy. They like to be unassuming. They like their quiet walks to stir up the creativity when their characters won't think and act as they want them to, and they like their privacy.

And like me, they become woefully out of practice socially after spending many months alone with their characters.

I've been working outside my home office for nearly two months now (I still edit quite a bit too ... but that's a blog for another time), and one thing I can tell you: I'm learning to socialize again, to have extended conversations with real human beings, and to play nice with others in a big, corporate sandbox.

Something tells me, there's a story here somewhere ...


David Bazzett said...

You've got me pegged. I would love to stay inside (or on the deck) and just write, but I'm finding as I interact with others about writing, I'm becoming more confident. Of course, I haven't been shot down by an editor yet. A great advantage to me is the way this story came together I know it was heaven sent and MUST be written, so I just keep plugging away, trying to make it acceptable.

Julie Carobini said...

Good for you, David. Writing it down is at least half the battle. As for editors ... some are terrific, others not so much. I received a rejection letter this week with a typo in it. Gave me an sort of satisfaction ... ;-)