End of April Status Check

Just wanted to write up a little bit about how the month of April has proceeded. I’ve found that setting some end-of-month goals has become very handy to drive me forward through the month. I seem to be a deadline-driven creature; when I have too much time on my hands and no concrete goal towards which I can work, I drift and works begin to drag out. I think it’s a consequence of having ADHD, honestly. I’ve learned enough about myself to figure out that I need a semblance of structure and organization while still allowing some breathing room for inspiration or drift.

It’s really no wonder I’ve struggled with this all my life – it has to be a finely tuned machine, one that I’m constantly adjusting, and my methods have to change all the time. Sitting at the computer and writing might work for a few weeks, then I have to switch over to dictating the story, then handwriting, then typing on my iPad. The constant flux and cycle keeps my mind engaged. I build my stories in much the same manner – start with a loose association of ideas, turn them into a tighter, more focused structure of a plot outline, then allow myself to blur that vision again as I build the first and second draft. More structure comes in with the third and fourth draft, etc. Working on several drafts at once affords me the luxury of working in several of these “media” at once.

I suppose the point of this entry, though, rather than the equivalent of stretching out my vocal cords, is to take a look at what came during the month previous. Obviously, I completed Torat Book 1, and am working on finishing up the outline of Lily. I’ve submitted to nine agents, one publisher, and one contest so far, and plan to submit to at least three more agents today. Considering I came into this year having never done a proper submission to a publisher or agent (despite having finished something like three or four novels), I’m proud of my progress.

I read something last night about how persistence was the only difference between writers who got published and those who did not, and it’s advice that I plan to take heart; even if this book doesn’t make it, I’ll just keep it up with the next book, and the next. Sooner or later, something has to hit. In the meantime, I can self-publish this novel if nothing else, though I’d really rather avoid that path if I can.

Let me just say, though, that I have respect and admiration for those that follow the self-publishing route, even if their books aren’t that great. There’s something to be said for having the bravery to keep pursuing that goal no matter what, and hell I’ve read some damned good self-published works. I think it’s clear that we no longer have to follow the old system if we don’t want to – quality works can still get into the hands of readers. I love that culture and literature are being democratized, and hope it continues.

I might as well also say that I’ll never be one of those authors that’s angry about piracy. I don’t think less of authors who do care about it – your work, your feelings, your decisions, but I’d actually be rather flattered if someone pirated my work, and I think the circle of karma is kind of at work there; if you’re friendly to readers and continue to produce quality work, the success you want will be there.

Anyway, I want to avoid the self-publishing path for now simply because I want more people to read my works. It may sound arrogant, but I do feel like I have somewhat unique ideas and concepts to share with the world, and I’d like more people to see them. That’s pretty much it.

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