Out of (Your) Control

Before I get into today’s post, I want to let you know that my Ravencon schedule is up on the Events page. If you’re going to be out and about in the Williamsburg, VA area next weekend, stop by and say Hi!

If you’re a writer, then you know about struggle.

If you’re taking a serious, open-eyed look at doing this as a career, then you’re aware that there is a lot of work involved, and that none of that work will guarantee you any degree of success.

Sound harsh? Reality often does.

Don’t get me wrong: All of that work will certainly grease the skids for you. Teach yourself to write a great story, then develop the self-discipline to sit down regularly and write that story. That goes a long way. So does developing the skills to write a good pitch, a good synopsis, etc. Writing is a continuous stream of learning, trying, editing, and improving.

But it won’t get you all the way there.

At some point, if you want to do this as a career, you will need to take a leap of faith and willingly enter into a facet of the business that you have absolutely no control over, but will have a definite impact on your writing career.

If you follow writing blogs, or attend cons and workshops, you’ll hear about how to handle rejections, and unfavorable critique. Both of these things are out of your control and *Will* happen to you. You can’t please everyone all the time.

But go hang out in the bars and you may hear a horror story or two. Maybe a book does well, but the publisher folds before a second print run can be ordered. Maybe a price point gets set too high and the book fails to earn to expectations, which makes the next book harder to sell – or kills a series.

You’ll hear these stories, knowing that while writing is an art and a craft, publishing is a business. On an objective level, you know that these things are possible. Subjectively, though, it’s not something that can happen to you.

Until it does.

And it’s not like a rejection, where you can chalk it up to a difference in taste, or something like that. This is purely an ill turn happening. Bad luck, folk will call it.

What do you do when bad luck strikes?

You go back to the work. Back to what you can control. And you start again.


It can’t rain all the time and the more times you take a chance and step outside, the more likely it is that you’ll find the sun.



Want a taste of what’s out there?  Stop by the Freebies page for excerpts.


Time: 11:44 am – ish (it’s a two pot of coffee day)

Music : Sabaton – No Bullets Fly