Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Writing is a Career

If a writer wants to be taken seriously, they have to treat the job seriously. That means that the comments they make in public need to be professional. Of course, they can talk about their children, and their pets, and their garden, exactly as you might talk about such topics at work. But just as being rude to the boss at your day job may see you unemployed fairly quickly, so too being rude about your cover or your publisher may see you not getting any more covers or contracts.
Publishing is a small world. Everyone knows someone who knows someone. So switch off the internet before raving about how your heroine has long blonde hair and is overweight, and the cover model is a size zero with a bob cut. Spell check your blog posts. Answer emails from your publisher and their staff in a timely manner. In other words, you’re at work, so act in a professional manner.
And most of all keep writing.
Some days it’s natural to want to come home, sink into a comfortable chair, and relax. Do that. For half an hour. Then get your butt in front of the computer and start writing. Every page is one page closer to the end of the book. Even one paragraph is better than nothing.
I’ve been able to write a number of books because I write shorter books. Mine are all under 25,000 words. This means fewer characters, less complicated plots, and the book as a whole is faster to write. The shorter length suits me. But that’s a matter of personal choice. The only rule is to keep writing. Every day if you possibly can.
I write for several different publishers. Because I write across different genres, I send each different genre to a different publisher. Writing several different genres helps me stay fresh and different, and writing for several different houses means I can have more books released than might be the situation at just one publisher. Of course, it also means that sometimes I have edits for several different books at once, which can be a headache. But overall, the system works for me.
Promotion can be a big drain on time. I have a blog and a website. I try to update my blog several times a week. I update Facebook and Twitter most days, sometimes twice a day. With chat loops, I read and respond to two loops I like, that have a mix of authors and readers. I go to at least one chat a month but these can vary from a special chat day that’s so busy it’s almost impossible to keep up with the posts, to ones where it’s like you’re talking to an empty room. I know often people lurk on loops but I really don’t know how helpful such chats are, either the incredibly busy ones or the almost silent ones.
I also guest blog from time to time, and enjoy visiting other people’s blogs and talking to the commenters. But again, it’s a big time commitment, first to write the blog, then to keep coming back and commenting. My hope is that every now and then someone will enjoy my blurbs and excerpts and be prepared to try one of my books.
Do I have the best plan to make my writing a successful career? I don’t know. All I know is that I’m doing my best to treat this seriously as my profession, to learn all I can, and to keep researching, keep learning and keep writing.

"Dogged Pursuit" blurb:

Dwyer is a two-hundred-year-old werewolf currently working as a limo driver. He’s enticed by the scent of a man he has to take into the city. The man’s smell overwhelms him and calls to him “mate”. Yet he thought only a male and a female could mate and he is gay.
Nelson is equally attracted to Dwyer and the two spend a very hot night together.
However their second date is on Halloween and Dwyer is really struggling to keep his wolf under control. Nelson’s scent is giving him a permanent hard-on and his wolf is demanding to be let free, to bite and mate with Nelson.
How is Dwyer going to get himself out of this mess? And what will Nelson’s reaction be? Can they possibly have a future together now?

"Dogged Pursuit" PG Excerpt

Nelson was struggling to concentrate on what he was saying. Am I even making sense anymore?
All he could think about was Mr. Tall, Dark, and Handsome sitting beside him and the huge cock the driver was displaying.
It was six months since he and Sam had split up. Four months with only his hand before he'd caved and bought a dildo, something he'd sworn he'd never do. A dildo he kept in a locked drawer so none of his friends would ever see it. But how he longed for a hot, hard cock powering up inside him and a hot, hard body to hold close to him.
Well, this Dwyer -- Mr. Dwyer? Dwyer something? -- surely had a huge cock and a hard body. He was ripped. That black t-shirt couldn't hide his muscled chest. His arms were strong, shoulders broad, and thighs -- oh, yum! His thighs stretched his black jeans to the limit. Judging by the size of the hard on, he was either hung like a horse or had a serious case of blue balls. And I want him!
Whoa! Where did that come from? Five minutes' conversation and I want him in my bed? Well yes, I do. Thick, dark, curly hair, eyes as black as sin, skin tanned a deep bronze. A totally delicious package. Just like the totally delicious package between his legs. Get your mind out of his pants! Oh, but how I'd love to have my hand in his pants. To feel that huge dick. I bet it's harder than a rock. I bet his come tastes real nice, too.
Nelson suddenly realized there was silence in the car. He looked at Dwyer, wondering if he'd missed a question or something, but Dwyer was looking straight ahead concentrating on the traffic. With a start, Nelson noticed they were only ten minutes from his office. What's the etiquette here? Can I ask him for his business card? His cell number? I probably can't just say, "Wanna fuck tonight?"
"We're almost at your office. What's the building look like?" asked Dwyer.
"Gray concrete, like so many others. But there's a very small courtyard out front with some seats and trees and a semi-circular drive, so you should be able to let me out right there."
"Sounds like a plan. How are you getting back to pick up your SUV tonight?"
"Yeah, that's a bit of a problem. None of the guys I work with live out that way, and none of my friends who live near me work up in this part of the city. Figured I'd have to get a taxi."
"I can pick you up if you want. But the timing will be tight. You'll need to leave work right at five so we can get you back to do the paperwork before the place shuts."
"You'd do that for me? That'd be great. I can leave by five. I'll just tell them I'll make up the time at home. They all know about this seatbelt recall. Couple of the guys have been making jokes about it all week. Here, I'll give you my cell number."
Dwyer handed Nelson his card as well, then pulled up outside Nelson's office.
A minute later, Nelson was collecting his briefcase and laptop and heading into the building, his heart beating fast at the knowledge he'd be seeing Dwyer again in just a few short hours.
Maybe, just maybe, I'll get fucked tonight by the hottest man in town. Woo hoo!


Berengaria Brown

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Catherine Cavendish said...

Really wise words here. Thanks for sharing, Berengaria

Berengaria Brown said...

Thank you for coming by, Catherine.