Several days ago I made the conscious decision to rework my Wasteland posts into a novella-length book to be published, hopefully on Amazon if not also at local retailers. It was a big decision, and one not lightly made, because it represented a big shift in my writing-as-a-hobby. If I could actually create something and sell it, would that make me feel like a “real” author?
In any case, I’ve started laying out the major chapters and plot points, and using my existing posts as guides for a narrative flow – I’m writing the whole thing anew, set in an entirely different setting, so little more than the specific themes of morality and loneliness translate easily. I even wrote what will become my introduction, the first words new readers will experience of my work.
People who have known me for a long time know I often find hobbies or short-lived flights of fancy that don’t stay around long. Having truly realized how much writing I had done in the past year was a real kick in the pants, encouragement that maybe creative expression isn’t just something I dove into as a mediocre crutch for my lacking social life, but a genuine interest. This morning I contacted an artist whose work I both appreciate and have seen used as book covers before, and pitched my ideas. We settled on a price and time-line, and I am genuinely looking forward to what he produces.
Looking back over 2017-2018, I averaged almost 600 published words a day. Since most all of my long-form story arcs have wrapped up, or at least been put on hiatus, I know that’s a very unrealistic pace to maintain from here on out, but I think a goal of several thousand words a week toward this project can be doable – I just have to make sure not to stress myself out about maths real work of putting words to paper.
It would be simply amazing to have an actual published book with my name on the cover, picked up not only by friends and family but also by strangers and random people from across the internet. I know I’m exceedingly early in the process but I’m already thinking about eBook and printed versions, and the logistics of making my work as accessible as possible to everyone who would be interested.
I suppose what I need to do most is to find a rhythm, a maintainable pace that helps urge me forward without making me feel like I’m going to stumble. I have several people I trust to serve as first-round editors, and if things look good maybe I’ll even submit it for something more professional prior to publication.
In what I find to be a funny anecdote, one of my favorite moments of this book process to date was when I came up with the very punny website name that will be the home for my future published works: https://christopherwrites.net
Sometimes it’s all about the little things.