On the way back from Freelance Writing today, my friend Kristina and I talked about the benefits of publication. We have similar goals and totally different writing styles. She is deliberate and very detail-oriented, I would like to be, but she likes my flow and word choice. I'm glad we've had a chance to learn from each other.
Our textbook for the class is written by a man who considers himself to be a hired pen. He will write anything for anyone, as long as they will pay him.
That is all very well and good, if your objective is money. Now, don't misunderstand, money is fine and I don't want you to think that I am diluting myself into thinking that I don't need it. I am not Emerson.
Good, I'm glad we're past that.
However, I do care about my work, I care about what happens to it, I care about it being used, about it doing what it is supposed to be doing.
I don't think it will ever be my day job. Even before marriage and family come into the picture, who knows what types of "pay the bills" jobs I will have. I'm a storyteller. That doesn't change if I'm a waitress or a barista or a tightrope walker. But, sometimes I might have to walk a tightrope for things like electricity and soymilk.
Kristina and I were talking about one point in the book, the author said "if being a published author is your goal, then go for it and don't give up until you make it."
We looked at each other, there on that stretch of sidewalk between Reade Center and Olson. "It's not," we said.
We want our writing to mean something and to affect people, but that doesn't mean that we need to be bestsellers. Maybe the people we need to impact are right around us and will read it because we share it, maybe the editor who rejects it will think about it for years to come, maybe our second cousin will find it and read it because after-all-she's-family and it will prompt a thought, or a mood or a question.
I know Who knows.
Now, I get to chill. I get to write and work hard and let God take care of what happens. It's just like the rest of my life, really.
He's got the whole world in His hands...