Well, this is it. I walked out of the remnants of my job today, and into full-time self-employed status.
For the last year I’ve been working part-time as a teacher in Offender Learning, and building up my writing activities. At first I thought that it was impossible to make a living as a writer of fiction, and that if I wanted to write for magazines I’d have to live in London. Neither of these things are true! I’ve got a monthly column at the back of Cycling Active now, and various other magazine gigs from time to time. The internet – and being in the right place at the right time – has been inestimably useful.
And, as JA Konrath and many others are proving, you can indeed make a living as a writer. It’s in genre writing and self-publishing that you can do this.
I also freelance for loveyoudivine Alterotica and Top Hat Books (under the John Hunt Publishing) umbrella, and these bring in additional incomes too.
I’ve got lots of plans for the coming year, and I’ll start to get them fleshed out over the next few weeks. I cannot quite believe this is real. Many of you have followed me and this blog from that first tentative declaration: “I’m a writer!” and watched as it became true.
I’m wondering how much to share on this blog. When I started I was frustrated that I couldn’t find definite information about money, time and contacts. If I went into Nursing, I could look up payscales – but everyone is so cagey about writing. Now I’m in the magical position of making a small, but actual, living from this, I want to share and help others. Unfortunately I have found that quite often, people don’t want to hear me say “study your market, sort your grammar, write lots, and work hard.” They’d rather there was a secret formula.
Still, if there’s anything in particular anyone wants to know about, if it will help your own journey, do shout! I’m off to open the celebratory wine…