Yesterday, my friend Silver posted about writing for herself. Which dovetailed nicely into something I've been thinking about this week.
Why am I suddenly writing right now when I hadn't been able to write for a while? I stopped thinking about what was marketable and started writing what I wanted to write. If for no other reason than I needed to write again.
Hell, the whole reason I never finished this fantasy in the first place boiled down to worrying about whether it would be something I could sell. It's why I couldn't muster the will to finish Duke #2. It lays beneath every unfinished novel I have on my harddrive. Including the ones I didn't finish before I started publishing my own books.
Of course, back when I wasn't publishing, I was querying and the thought was more along the lines of 'why finish this is no agent is going to want to look at it?' Which in a circuitous way led back to selling books. Down the road. Eventually.
I get to worrying whether anyone will want a book and I lose faith in the book. Yep. That shit's a killer.
So, yeah, I picked up this old book I never finished and now I'm working on finishing it. And still, the demon whispers that I'll never sell it. I'll never be able to make a cover for it or buy a cover for it. I'll never be able to pay for marketing. Why bother finishing it?
Because it's the book I want to write and I'm going to fucking finish it this time. Screw the market. I realized a long time ago that the market - as traditional publishing sees it - doesn't jibe with my set of philosophies anyway. And no, that isn't sour grapes. It just is what it is.
There's a market out there for me somewhere. It might not be huge. Or it might be bigger than I think. It's filled with people who want a good story, well-written and well-organized* and well-edited. People who want to be entertained and maybe think a little while they're doing it (or not because my some of my books encourage rather than force you to think about issues). I seek to entertain. I seek to uplift through heroic actions when I can, but the entertainment is the priority here.
Anyway, you might not see me publish anything else any time soon. I'm writing. You also might not see me marketing stuff because putting all that effort into marketing and not seeing sales harshes my groove. And I certainly don't need that.
I'm writing for the love of writing again. And that's all that really matters.
*Typing those words made me remember a particularly heinous reaction to a paper I wrote in college. The prof said it was well-written and well-organized but he didn't like the topic, so he gave me a D. (The assignment was to write a paper on some form of aggression. I chose to write it on 'assertiveness as positive aggression'. He hated that. Buttwart that he was.) Looking back, it was probably my first taste of a bad review of good writing. He was definitely not my target market.