A Job Writing~~by Mark Huntley-James

How much money can I make as a writer? Sorry, run that by me one more time. You want to make money, as a writer? Why? How?

I’ve been noticing how the internet is laden with advice on how to write for money. How to be a novelist. How to boost your sales. Or how not to get your hopes up because the successful writers are like lottery winners. Interestingly enough, as I started writing this, a discussion on the topic of writing and money popped up on my favourite online hangout at www.sffchronicles.com offering a wide variety of views. However, what follows is entirely my own opinion and there’s no-one else to blame.

The thing is, I’ve been writing since I was in my teens, and I would be delighted if someone gave me lots of money for doing it, but that’s not why I write.

I know I must be pretty good at it because people have been known to smile as they read what I wrote, and that’s a very good reason to write. Not as good as it makes me happy, but making someone else happy (or sad, or angry depending on what the writing is about) seems like a good reason for doing it.

Realistically, if I wanted to be paid to write, I would go and get a job where someone paid me to write. Except for that absolutely miniscule percentage of writers who get their novel published and sell enough to actually see some money, the rest of us had better have a day-job, win the lottery, or be startled to discover that they are the only heir of a fabulously wealthy and recently-deceased long-lost relative. Taking those options in order, that’s: reality, wild optimism, and the sort of incredible fantasy that you should expect from a writer.

My writing is just an aspect of a more general drive – I like making things. I like the contented buzz of standing back and staring at the latest story, the greenhouse, the new doors on the storage shed or the new book shelves made from old shipping pallets, and being able to say to myself “That’s good. That works”. And whether it’s a piece of writing, or the bookshelves, there’s also satisfaction in that moment where I look and say to myself, “That just needs polishing down a bit, that little bit there…”

People do get paid for writing, do make a career out of it, and I would hope that some of them still enjoy their job. I’ve been employed in two different jobs over the years, doing something I enjoy, but after a while each of those did become just a job. Writing has never been a job, and perhaps that’s just as well, because I’ve not grown bored with it.

There’s a quote by Stephen King that really sums it up: “Amateurs sit and wait for inspiration, the rest of us just get up and go to work.” It’s a very good quote, but for me it glosses over a very important point, and implies that somehow being an amateur is inferior. If I want to be paid to write then I have to treat it as a job, but honestly, I am intrinsically an amateur, literally someone who does it for the love of it. The King quote is locked into the mindset that being paid is the one and only measure.

Writing is about making something, and it makes me happy.

Isn’t that enough?


OMP Admin Note:  Mark Huntley-James writes science fiction and fantasy on a small farm in Cornwall, where he lives with his partner and a menagerie of cats, poultry and sheep.

He has two urban fantasy novels out on Kindle – “Hell Of A Deal” (http://relinks.me/B01N94VXBC ) and “The Road To Hell” (relinks.me/B07BJLKFSS  ) – and is working on a third.

He can be found online at his blog http://writeedge.blogspot.co.uk, his website (https://sites.google.com/site/markhuntleyjames/), and occasionally on that new-fangled social media.


Our short story anthologies written by over 100 writers have been recently published (links below) with all proceeds being donated to the charity organizations our group supports.

If you are a Kindle Unlimited member, you can read the complete anthology for FREE, and KU proceeds are donated along with the proceeds from the sale of our anthologies.

Our volunteer authors love to see reviews, and every review helps to make the One Million Project’s books more visible to Amazon customers, assisting us in our mission to raise One Million Pounds / Dollars for EMMAUS Homeless Programs and Cancer Research UK.

LINKS

myBook.to/OMPThriller

myBook.to/OMPFantasy

myBook.to/OMPFiction

myBook.to/OMPVarietyAnthology

A Little Ray of Sunshine~~by Christine Larsen

Sad little corners of our hearts are full of holes we can never fill; small dark places shaped in a fashion that only one special being could ever fit. With time, the sharpest, most raw and ravelled edges are smoothed… much of the time. But the hole remains forever.

We once witnessed this kind of grief and loss by a cow mourning her dead baby. High on a hill where she had given birth to her lifeless offspring, she cried… loud and long bellows of agony, interspersed with low moans as she licked and licked that lost soul as if sheer willpower alone could restore life. She would allow no-one near her to comfort or even distract her with feed and water. Three days and nights her obvious pain continued. And then she walked away. It was done. But that specific spot in that particular paddock would give her pause for a small quiet time before a long sighing kind of moan seemed to set her free to move on. There were more calves for her, but this one? We had no doubt of that special hole left forever in her heart.

My mother had a similar experience after she lost a toddler of 22 months, who came home after a long illness, believed to be recovered – only to unexpectedly die in her arms. She held him for his last breath and in a sad little corner of her heart until the day she died 57 years later. I was told she nearly lost her mind with her grief, until the combined encouragement of our family doctor and my father convinced her another baby was the only solution to her empty arms – and a wonderful start to shrinking and smoothing the edges of that special hole in her heart, as well. I can vouch for the truth of this healing. I was that baby and my mother would share the story of her pain and her recovery with me in great detail over the many years we shared.

It was only recently I heard the name for babies like the ones I’ve mentioned – it’s ‘Rainbow Babies’. Believing and loving the Rainbow Bridge concept for reunion with beloved animals after death as I do, I guessed what the name indicated. When I asked Google, “What is a rainbow baby?”one of the most beautiful answers was a sweet mention of the name especially remembering –

‘…all those babies born sleeping, or we’ve carried but never met; those we’ve held but couldn’t take home, and the ones that came home but didn’t stay.’

And I thought again of my small brother. When he came home the first time, all seemed exactly right through his early babyhood in the most loving family imaginable. When he came home the second time (also from hospital but this time following his terrible, isolating illness), he couldn’t stay even 24 hours. It has always been the strangest of feelings… this knowing I would probably never have existed without him leaving that special space for me.

Like the miracle of a rainbow after a storm, a rainbow baby is one that is born after the loss of another. Rainbows don’t erase storms, but they symbolize HOPE.’

God surely does work in mysterious ways.


OMP Admin Note: Christine Larsen is a writer, farmer, wife, mother, and grandmother from Australia. She has never been homeless or had significant cancer – yet – but has had exposure to both – creating a great sense of empathy and desire to help in any way she can. She is humbled by the opportunity to give one of her stories to the sincerely worthwhile causes of Cancer research and Homelessness.

To find out more about Christine and her work:

ceedee moodling  (Christine’s website)

Christine Larsen, Author

 – on Wattpad

–  on Facebook

– on Tablo

– on Amazon

Old McLarsen had some Farms (farming memoirs)

ceedee4kids (Christine’s children’s book site)


Our short story anthologies written by over 100 writers have been recently published (links below) with all proceeds being donated to the charity organizations our group supports.

If you are a Kindle Unlimited member, you can read the complete anthology for FREE, and KU proceeds are donated along with the proceeds from the sale of our anthologies.

Our volunteer authors love to see reviews, and every review helps to make the One Million Project’s books more visible to Amazon customers, assisting us in our mission to raise One Million Pounds / Dollars for EMMAUS Homeless Programs and Cancer Research UK.

LINKS

myBook.to/OMPThriller

myBook.to/OMPFantasy

myBook.to/OMPFiction

myBook.to/OMPVarietyAnthology