Part 1 – Time and Money – I started writing in 2007. It didn’t cost me anything, but time. The time it took to write that first story. It’s still sitting in my computer. It was never published. I took it to a Highlights Conference and discovered there were a few good things about it. But there were lots of things wrong – things that needed work, if I wanted to see it published.
Highlights was my first writing business expense back in 2009, but it was the first of many. Have you ever heard, that to make money, you have to spend it? It’s true in writing, and in every single business I know.
Starting in 2009 I invested in education. I joined SCBWI – the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators. They were my go-to resource to find teachers, and classes, and conferences. Class by class, year by year, I grew as a writer.
It was slow-going because I couldn’t put the time into it. Writing wasn’t my career. Teaching was. My kids ranged from high school to college. Writing was what I did, when I could find the time, on weekends.
I retired in May of 2015. From that day on I could invest both time and money into my writing. It worked!
In May of 2018 I found a story about Neil Armstrong that I wanted to tell. In June I got my first R & R from an agent. That stands for revise and resend, and it means you’re getting closer to getting published the traditional way. I pushed harder with both time and money.
Part 2 – The Cost of Self-Publishing – The photo came from the Armstrong Air and Space Museum. It gave me the idea for my 1st book, Neil Armstrong’s Wind Tunnel Dream.
The idea didn’t cost time or money, but turning it into a book took both. Self-publishing was the only way I could make it happen in time for the 50th anniversary of the moon landing.
When I write, I can only have one voice in my head, mine. A little noise is fine. But too much, or worse yet, WORDS, and I must change rooms or pull out headphones. Then I can write on!