I had a conversation recently with some indie writer friends and we were comparing notes on how to write faster and better. Two of them are following a particular method (Book in a Month) that shuts off your inner editor and gets down to the nuts and bolts of putting words on a page. [Read more…]
I’ve never been asked that hackneyed question of writers “where do you get your ideas?” or, at least, it’s been asked in a more subtle way. I don’t really think about it any more, because I’ve learned that ideas come from anywhere, at anytime. Ideas are the opportunistic catch of the fishing mind and they are malleable, furtive, and everywhere. You just have to be ready with the net.
Friends of mine recently asked me how I felt about my writing. I found myself describing how and why I thought I was getting better, why I felt I was able to sit down and write with little hesitation, and how this was profoundly different than the way I approached my writing just a few years ago. I cast about for a good analogy to describe the feeling and this is what I came up with.
There is a passage in Malcolm Gladwell’s amazing book Outliers that, at its heart, speaks volumes about why writers should self-publish.
[T]hree things—autonomy, complexity, and a connection between effort and reward—are, most people agree, the three qualities that work has to have if it is to be satisfying. It is not how much money we make that ultimately makes us happy between nine and five. It’s whether our works fulfills us. …Work that fulfills those three criteria is meaningful.
Over and over again on websites and in personal correspondence, I hear writers who have chosen to self-publish talk about how energized (or re-energized) they are. While there’s the inevitable grousing about low-sales numbers or promotions gone haywire, rarely are there complaints about the work itself. I know I find myself ready to write every day, eager to get to the page and get my latest words down.
That’s because, according to Gladwell’s definition, self-publishing is meaningful work.