This week I was talking with a life coach and she described me as a businesswoman, an entrepreneur, and my writing as my business.
And I was like, WHAAAT?
Could that be true?
I looked at my writing as kind of fluffy. I mean, I sit down and get to be creative. Where’s the professionalism in that? I’m filling up a writing journal with colored pen and pencils, writing ideas and quotes, and character names. Prepping for NaNoWriMo can’t be equated to being business minded, can it?
Yet, at the same time, I get in the zone. For a few hours I let the world fall away and just focus on story creation. And each day of November I’m setting aside 3 hours in the afternoon to focus on writing.
So does that qualify as an entrepreneurial endeavor? To take what’s in my brain and produce some form of it?
But any idea and innovation has to be thought up, then enacted.
According to the Oxford American Dictionary:
So an author is in the business of written material. We don’t know if what we have to say will catch on, be picked up, sell fast or at all. I’m not financially motivated (though I appreciate having money to provide for myself and occasionally buy nice things). But it’s still a fact that a writer does not make much initially, unless very lucky or truly blessed, depending upon how you look at.
I’ve said often that all I want to do in life is write and have a job on the side to pay bills and buy stuff. And now I realize I’m doing just that. I work part time and come home to peruse the literary corners of my brain.
It’s not particularly romantic. I have no idea where my story is going to go. I reward myself with episodes of Downton Abbey, NCIS, Adventure Time, and the occasional a scoop of ice cream. I don’t have a fancy/grand office with leather bound tomes and a mahogany desk. I don’t have a designated office. Nor do I dress up in professional attire/have a stylish professional wardrobe. I write in jeans or pajamas, work sprawled over my bed or my family’s dining room table. That is not what I envisioned for a writer’s life.
And yet what else is there to a writer’s life but finding somewhere, anywhere, and something to write?
And we all have to start somewhere. J.K. Rowling was on welfare while she plugged away at bringing the wizarding world to life. Charles Schulz didn’t really see himself as a writer though he plugged away at comics and has inspired millions.
It’s our job as writers to get lost in words and get messy and creative and wander in our thoughts. Hopefully we come out on the other side producing something, even if it just a better state of mind having connected with our gifts that drive us to keep living.
For a period of time each day I crank something out. I work at doing something. This is my “job” that isn’t paying me monetarily, but from which I get much satisfaction. This is my passion and I’m taking it seriously now.
So if you’re a budding author or are doing NaNoWriMo for the first time like me, maybe seeing yourself as an entrepreneur–as someone focused minded working diligently and knowledgeably–will help you connect with the passion of writing and get those words down on the page.