Someone asked me the other day; when should I give up if things aren’t going to plan and I’m not getting anywhere with my writing?
Oh, you guys are killing me.
You really shouldn’t be asking me this kind of question at the moment. Don’t you know I’m an emotional wreck? That a trip to the fridge can see me in floods of tears quicker than you can say “chocolate.” I can’t cope with this kind of soul-destroying questioning at the moment.
So, here’s what I said:
NEVER GIVE UP!
But, Angela, I’ve been writing for ten years now and nothing has happened.
If you are a writer, it doesn’t matter what you tell yourself, you will still have to write. That’s just the way it is.
The number of times I’ve thrown a hissy fit and given up. And yet, I’m still here 🙂
You need to question why you’re writing and what you’re getting out of it. What do you want from it?
You want to make money from your writing but you’re not?
Did you know Stephen King’s first book, Carrie, was rejected thirty times by publishers? Or, that he rejected the novel himself but his wife saved the manuscript from the bin? (See, it’s not only me that has hissy fits :)) Look how much money he’s making now.
Now, I’m not saying you’re going to earn like Stephen King but, if you give up, you certainly aren’t going to be making money, are you?
And, to be fair, you’re not going to make money from writing if that’s the only reason you’re writing. It will show in your work. You have to have a love for your craft and not just the money.
Only the big boys make big money at traditional publishers. And they worked hard to get there.
Did you know the median income for a UK author is £10,500?
You can self-publish. I am such a big fan of self-publishing. There is money to be made there. Look at Mark Dawson. He’s earning big time.
BUT, he’s worked hard to get there.
My advice would be, if you’re only interested in churning out a book for the money, don’t do it. And that’s truthfully the only time I would tell you to give up.
But, if you are writing because you have to, because your soul aches to write, then write! Don’t ever give up.
Whether you’re 18 or 79.
Not one of us knows what is around the corner.
And, if writing makes your heart sing, then write.
Keep dreaming. Then dream bigger. Put in that hard work and maybe, just maybe, you’ll achieve it.
And, if you don’t achieve it?
Keep writing anyway, because a true writer can never give up.
That’s just the way it is.