Todd and I spent last night at Dukcon (www.duckon.org) where he presented his Novelist's Boot Camp. It was a great success. Then this morning we dragged ourselves out of bed to drive to downtown Chicago and Printer's Row for the annual bookfair sponsored by the Chicago Tribune. Todd signed books in the Twilght Tales Tent and a great time was had by all. It was a beautiful day for an outdoor event such as the Printer's Row Book Fair and we caught up with old writer friends and acquaintances.
Tonight I return to Duckon, which thankfully is just a few blocks from my house, to help another writer friend of mine, Kelle Z. Riley (http://www.kellezriley.com/), sell her books and provide assistance in her workshop as needed.
Then tomorrow I return to Duckon to present a session on Tax Tips for Writers.
On Monday - we all return to work our day jobs that pay the rent, put food on the table and provide medical coverage.
Okay, I know it sounds like I'm complaining. Yeah, I am a little. Just want folks to know it ain't as easy as people think. Even the folks who make it look easy are only foolin' ya!
So, why do we do this. Because we can't NOT do it. Disease or Passion? Take your pick but it's a calling, it's a compulsion, it's an obsession, it's all of the above. Just know that it takes a lot of stick-to-it-ness to make a go of writing. I often say (and may have said it in this blog) that there are two types of writers who don't get published - those that give up and those that die first. That should tell you something.
I suspect that most of the artistic endeavors have the same challenge. My daughter is a musician and that is yet another arena where very few make a living off their talent. But we're in there helping her. She cut her first demo CD and she's been a backup singer in a local cover band. So far, lots of hard work but more money going out than coming in.
So, next time you see an new writer or a struggling musician consider buying their book or CD. You can always give them as gifts but you just might find out that you like them for yourself. After all, even the big name authors were nobody's starting out hopeful that someone would buy their books. I just read that a first edition Harry Potter is expected to 'catch' 20k (that's $20,000!) at an upcoming auction. Can you imagine if you had bought one of the first editions?
Okay, so the odds are against you being able to predict something like this but think about how much good you can do for a struggling writer or musician. The holidays are coming up and books and CDs make great gifts. They really do.