Today’s post is part of the Insecure Writer’s Support Group, a blog hop hosted by Alex J. Cavanaugh. It’s a way for insecure writers like myself give each other advice and encouragement. Click here to see a full list of participating blogs.
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I recently made a huge leap of faith: I asked my job to let me drop to part time employment so I could spend more time writing. It was a scary decision, but I know at least a few of my fellow insecure writers might be thinking about doing something similar. So I want to share some of the steps I’ve taken to make this a little less terrifying.
- Practice: I’ve been taking my writing seriously for at least the last five years. I write a minimum of 6000 words a week (sometimes much more than that), so I already know how to treat writing like a job.
- Help: I’ve hired an editor to help me clean up my short story series and prepare it for publication as an ebook (it should come out by the end of this year).
- Comrades: I’ve joined a local writing group, the Greater Lehigh Valley Writer’s Group, a.k.a. GLVWG (pronounced Gliv-wig). Through that organization, I’ve made friends—both beginners like myself and professionals working in the publishing industry—who give me real encouragement in what I’m doing. If you’re not part of an organization like GLVWG, I suggest you join one. You’ll be glad you did.
- A Safety Net: This last one is key. Over the past few years, I’ve set money aside in a special savings account, enough to cover my living expenses (including health insurance) for a prolonged period in case things do not go as planned. This more than anything else keeps my fears in check because I know that even if I fail I will not end up starving and homeless. The fact that I’m still working part time helps protect me financially as well.
It took me years to prepare for the day I walked into my boss’s office and asked to go part time. Despite all my preparations, taking that leap of faith was still a scary experience. I have no guarantee that my writing can support me financially. I don’t know if I have the business sense to do what I’m trying to do. I’m not even 100% sure this is what I want to do with my life. All I know is that I’d never forgive myself if I didn’t try.
I hope you, my fellow insecure writers, found some of this useful. If you did, please let me know, or if you have any other ideas on how to make this leap of faith less frightening, please share them in the comments below.