Having just released my first book, there comes feeling of a great sense of achievement, but this moment of personal achievement almost wasn’t going to be. When I originally looked into independent publishing it was 2011 and I was attempting to write literary fiction. Things were different back then and in order to be taken seriously as a writer I thought I had to write serious fiction. I worked and worked on a book and put it out and it got some relative success but something didn’t feel right, so I unpublished and didn’t write again for four years.
There was a lot going on during this time in my personal life that affected my writing, but also in hindsight I could see that I wasn’t ready to publish and that I wasn’t learned enough in the industry to make a true success of it and when I went back to that project, I couldn’t finish it. As much as I love literary fiction, I didn’t want to write it.
Instead of completely giving up, I gave myself permission to switch genres, to explore sci-fi and things just flew. I’m now starting my second book and have so many ideas I’m often struggling to keep up.
You don’t need to write the next great American novel to be considered a serious writer. You’re not less of a writer if you choose to write sci-fi, chick lit or anything you want, because this is your writing career, no one elses is.
Do you want to wake up everyday excited to write? Do you want to feel passionate about what you’re working on? Well if you let other people tell you what you should be writing, then how will that lead to your happiness?
Trust in your own instincts on what you want to write, you’ll create more work and ultimately be more successful, because writing should be about personal happiness as much as financial return.