You’ve pillaged the nearest towns. You’ve ransacked every bookery you can find. And yet, your desperate search has not ended.
What can you get your writer friends for Christmas?
Have no fear! I’m here to present to you a list of items for you to get them that they are sure to enjoy and thank you endlessly for!
Buy yourself their book(s). So, yes, this means you get to get something for yourself, but it’s insanely encouraging when a friend picks up a book that I’m in. If you’re looking to get something for me, might I suggest picking up A Celebration of Storytelling?
Once you’ve bought their book(s), read them. And if it’s an anthology, read the whole thing. You might find other authors you like, too! Those authors need Christmas gifts, too. Not as much as your author friend, sure, but it’s the season of giving, right?
One of the best tips I’ve ever received is, “Act like you’ve been here before.”
My first novel comes out in a few months, but I shouldn’t act all freaked out about it. Be professional. Sure, party and be happy, but don’t act like this is such a weird thing. So far, I think I’ve got that covered. It’s helpful that it’s a relatively long process between writing, subbing, contract, proofs, and so on. It gives time for emotions to filter.
But this week I took a big step. For the first time, I’m not just investing time and money into my writing career. I’m dedicating future income to it.
Granted, it’s not a huge amount. Really, barring something weird happening (2020’s ending soon, right?), I should be able to pay in “normal” money if I have to.
So, what did I do?
I bought an actual domain. Take a look at the address. It’s not “Wanted: One New Earth” anymore. Now it’s my name up there.
Why change it? Two reasons: First, a free site is obviously a free site. A dedicated domain shows some professionalism. Second, “Wanted: One New Earth” is a bit of a mouthful. “Jonathon Mast: Author” is a little easier to remember if you remember the name of the author you’re looking for!
Buying a domain really doesn’t take that much money. However, it is a yearly fee. And I’ve decided that I will fund this with money I receive for my writing.
Which means I now need to sell at least a few stories. I’m on the hook.
I’m not panicking. You’re panicking!
OK, no, this is fine. I’m fine.
The money isn’t a huge amount, but this is a huge step for me. Writing is no longer something I do to earn some extra money. It will now pay a bill. Now the writing must be self-funding.
Sit back? Relax? Go sight seeing? Visit old friends or older relatives? Maybe catch up on your reading?
I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again: If your intent is to publish, you need to approach writing as a job. It’s not a hobby to do whenever. It’s not something to attempt when the mood strikes. Both of those things are fine, as long as you understand that then it’s a hobby or something even a little less than a hobby. But if your goal, your intent, is to publish, you need to approach writing as a job – because it is.
This week I’ve been on vacation. I’m not at home in Kentucky. I’m nowhere near pursuing any ministry right now. A week of relaxation at my mother-in-law’s! (And yes – that really is a week of relaxation.)