Writing takes time. Unfortunately, so does the rest of life; breathing, hygeine, social life, making a living…
My current means of paying the bills comes from self-employment. My partner and I own Lucah Designs. We sell antiques (as-is and refurbished), industrial furniture (cleaned and converted to domestic use), and newly created pieces (artistic, one-of-a-kind items upcycled from antique components). Over the last two weeks, my motivation has been more towards the writing endeavors than the business side of things.
Today, we pack up for Atlanta. We set up our wares there at the Scott Antique Market once a month in hopes that folks will fall in love with our pieces. It’s hit and miss, but that the way it is.
The good thing about doing shows is that there is plenty of down-time while we man the booth. Plus, I get twenty hours in the van on the trip down and back. While this time isn’t all that conducive for writing fresh words, it is excellent for editing those already put down on paper. So, I have less guilt of writing between the lines, focusing on my craft, within the fits and starts of the business of making money.
My partner, Micah, is amazingly understanding about this bent of mine towards writing. He actually grants me more time to do it than I deserve. In the backs of both of our minds is the hope that–one day–it will all be worth it. All it takes is that one book to take off. Then, it can run in the background, adding to the income stream. Even a tiny tributary will help relieve the pressure of creating, creating, creating while never knowing if the masses are going to appreciate what we have made.
Then again, I guess writing has that same unknown factor. Authors can hack away at a manuscript and create that magnum opus only to have it collect dust in the backroom of the workshop. We have had plenty of furniture pieces do that. We think the English Lowboy from the 1720’s is amazing, wonderful, an easy sell. Yet, we drag it to show after show, put it online, display it in our storefront, and hold on to it far longer than we anticipated.
Sounds a lot like sitting on a polished manuscript to me.
Ah, but that’s no reason to stop creating: furniture or novels. Eventually, if the piece is strong enough, someone will fall in love with. Hundreds of buyers pass by our booth for every one that stops, inspects, questions, then pulls out the cold hard cash.
I’ll keep writing. I’ll keep putting my work out there to be judged and assessed. What’s the point of creating a piece if I don’t do all I can to get it to the right audience? Even if we have to store the finished pieces for a while, eventually, they all sell.