I keep putting marketing projects in front of me to avoid fine writing.
Writing fiction is HARD.
It’s the second hardest thing I’ve ever done beyond raising my kids, and husband.
Marketing, helping companies, especially startups grow is engaging. Working with entrepreneurs, especially engineers, to find their targets, and create campaigns that sell their stuff is empowering.
But it ain’t like writing fiction.
My muse comes out and plays with me when I write fiction. She and I intertwine, not just intersect like with marketing. We make love. We fuck. She drives me harder and harder…to THINK, imagine, create. One idea follows another, in rapid succession at first, then quicker, breathtakingly fast the story stings itself together, not like beads or pearls, but a continual stream of light energy. I’m riding it as it illuminates each character in their own dynamic colors, some blending harmonically, others clashing grotesquely.
I’m never bored, or lonely making it with my muse.
So, WHY do I keep taking on marketing projects when I passionately LOVE writing fiction?
It’s not a money thing. Not anymore. I spent 6 yrs writing fiction, produced four full length novels and a short story series, and haven’t made enough to pay for a family vacation to [pick your favorite vacation spot]. Marketing has always paid the bills. At this rate, at my age, money isn’t the driver preventing me from writing fiction like it was when I gave up fine writing to focus on my ‘real career,’ over 6 yrs ago now.
If it ain’t money, then I’m thinking it must be my ego preventing me from writing fiction. Beyond paying bills, making money is very validating! So is helping moms looking to become CEOs, or to coders developing their latest SaaS, it’s fun turning entrepreneurs onto the knowledge they need to make their marketing work to grow their business.
But it ain’t the challenge of writing fiction.
Fiction requires my full attention. Total immersion into another space, another place, not the real one I’m in. So the real world needs to be VERY QUIET, so it doesn’t pull me out of the world I’m creating. And as I write this I’m watching a truck back up on the street, BEEPING and BEEPING as it backs into our driveway to deliver drywall to the studio we’re building out behind our home. The dog is BARKING and BARKING cuz there are installers outside, crossing back and forth through her yard. Then there is our neighbor across the street cutting down huge cedars that take over properties here in the Great Northwest. And the tree cutters tossing branches into the crusher RUMBLING and GRINDING the limbs to mulch. And our next door neighbor installing a new fireplace, after drilling out the old one all last week.
Real hard to travel to virtual places when the real world is so invasive!
Yeah, I’ve tried noise-canceling headphones, and those squishy orange ear-plugs, but they both irritate, and are distracting.
Three months ago, we moved from the overcrowding and noise of East Bay, S.F. to Woodinville WA. The name perfectly describes this place. Densely wooded. Being far from towns and freeways, with acres between homes, I’m hoping once the studio is finished I’ll have a quiet place to write fiction. But I feel scared, anxious about committing to fine writing again. I’m afraid I won’t have the focus, the stamina I’ll need to create cohesive, complex story, and characters that will linger, stay with the reader long after the read. Quiet or not, writing fiction is HARD.
I’ve committed to January 2021 to begin fine writing again.
But between commitment to some future reality and actual reality is the Grand Canyon…
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