Why I Put Fiction on Ice
I stopped writing because I didn’t have a reason to write fiction.
I liked it, sure. It was a creative outlet and a fun way to spend my time, but I didn’t see it going anywhere. Worse, I saw it going nowhere and that’s something else, entirely.
I’d been listening to a handful of writing podcasts and they were all doom and gloom. You’re never going to make it as a writer unless you’re amazing, lucky, super social, etc. I’d listen to these podcasts on my commute and almost always come home in a down mood.
Then, when I decided to vote in the podcast awards (for the Irish and Celtic Music Podcast, which wasn’t about writing and was actually upbeat, I looked through the other listings and categories. The Smart Passive Income Podcast caught my eye and I downloaded it. Unlike the hosts of my writing podcasts, Pat was upbeat and encouraging: Anyone can be an entrepreneur. Even my wife noticed that I came home happier after listening to him that I had before.
The Entrepreneur Detour
As I listened to Pat, and eventually to other entrepreneur podcasts, I quickly found something shiny:
Online entrepreneurship is writing. It’s writing blog posts and information products (a.k.a. books) that help customers achieve goals.
Well, I liked writing, and here was an outlet that seemed to work and where the participants were far more excited and optimistic. I dove in.
A niche site aims to deliver targeted content to a narrow audience and serve them better than anyone else online.
A Site that Worked
In the mean time, the website for the now-defunct translation company I created with my wife back in 2012 took off and became a true niche site.
Based on a few articles about applying for Japanese visas and another series about the Monbukagakusho Scholarship, I built an engaged audience.
I taught them a lot by answering their questions every day (I still do), but they have taught me more.
They taught me that to write is to serve an audience, not my own desires to put words on a page,
They taught me about the writing process, too. Through writing an ebook for that site, I learned that writing a book was about creating a specific experience for the audience. Editing, something I had struggled with in my fiction endeavors, was even more so.
Writer Level-Up: Authorpreneur
And that brought me back to writing.
Writing my non-fiction book has taught me a lot and I’m excited to build that into fiction efforts.
I have also come to understand that an independent author is an entrepreneur – I call myself an authorpreneur now.
Everything I was excited to learn about in entrepreneurship: building an audience and engaging with them, finding and understanding a market, and building high quality products all applies to being an authorpreneur.
My products are my stories. The transformation I seek to produce is to build community through a shared story experience and to inspire people to do more than they think they can through allegory. My goal is to offer hope and this is a time when hope is sorely needed.
And of course, to leave my reader more entertained and happy than when he or she first picked up my book.
2017: (First) Year of the Authorpreneur
This is where I am going. I have a purpose. I have goals. And I have a way to get there.
I hope you’ll be here to follow along the way.
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I look forward to hearing from you soon!