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June 24th, 2023 - A different perspective on writing for love and for money

I've just started reading Nicolas Cole's book, 'The Art & Business of Online Writing'. I'm already aware of a lot of the ideas from listening to his appearances on podcasts. His ideas have struck me and I think they've come at a good time. I'm currently re-evaluating some of the ideas I've held about writing. Chiefly that "I can't make money just from writing so I need something else to support it."

Lately I've come to be more accepting of what's aways been obvious. That writing is a central element of my life. To avoid it, makes little sense. And there are ways of making money from writing. I've recently started looking at copywriting again. I've started looking at that short fiction site and the kind of audience I'm writing to - or as Cole would say, the category I'm writing for. There are opportunities there to both write content I would enjoy and potentially monetise.

One thing I read just this morning struck me from Cole's book was this.

"A lot of writers shy away from naming their writing that specifically, because they fear putting themselves in a box. But especially when you're first starting out online, a box is exactly what you want. You want people to know where to put you on the bookshelf of their mind."

I've always had aspirations of being a writer that flits between different "boxes". But in order to do that successfully I would need to be hyper specific about the kind of boxes I'm occupying at any time. that short fiction site is currently a book review blog dedicated to short fiction. But if I look at my future aspirations for it I can see that I want it to be an online resource dedicated to helping beginner writers tackle the short story form - a journey I'm currently on myself. Knowing that level of specificity helps define the content so much more and creates a clearer picture of the audience.

Ultimately I want to be known as a writer of fiction. But I accept that can be a long journey. It takes time to commit the hours of writing and to hone the craft. I've always thought that whilst doing that I should assign myself a career I can stomach that provides enough money. Now I'm thinking of ways I can still write professionally, just within a different box to the one I'd like to end up in. If it means more time writing and still being able to cover my expenses - huzzah.


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