The cool thing that comes with being a published author is that now people actually admit to knowing you. Hi, Mom!
My new book, We Are Not Alone–The Writer’s Guide to Social Media is now out in all forms, eBook, print and bus stop graphitti…yeah, sorry about that. I got a bit over excited. I wanted to write a book that was fun to read. Writers. I have bad news. We have to sell, which means we have to market. Not only do we have to market, we have to market well so we have time left over to write great books. Most marketing books made me want to kill myself with a stapler, so I decided to remedy that. I created We Are Not Alone to make learning about social media marketing fun. Sort of like when you get a traffic ticket and have to take Defensive Driving…why not take Comedy Defensive Driving? My goal is to change your habits, not your personality. I assume most of you aren’t doing this writing thing until your dream of working in sales pays off. No? No one? Cool!
Another exciting development is that I was asked to guest blog on the Top10Blog, which is popular in the UK and almost as exciting as my radio interview for that station in Kazakhstan. I highly recommend that any of you reading this will go by and read the other Top Ten Lists, but I figured I would post a version of my little contribution as a taste of what this site has to offer. Okay, well go visit anyway. So without further ado….. *drum roll*
Top Ten Reasons to Become a Writer
10. Therapy is getting too expensive
When you become a writer, the first thing that becomes clear is that if you are at all interesting enough to be able to write good fiction, then you are seriously screwed up. As in years of expensive therapy screwed up. Writers are not normal.
So why not take all those notebooks filled with letters to your Inner Child and turn those babies into cold hard cash? I say, it is time for us to demand Inner Child Labor. Instead of letting that ungrateful punk float around in our limbic brain, it is high time we make the little twerp pull his weight.
Have anger issues coupled with violent fantasies? You are a born horror author.
Attend sex therapy to deal with a porn addiction? Erotica author.
Have “Mommy” issues? Write guest posts for Top Ten Blogs.
9. Revenge, Duh
What better way to get back at that jerk who stood you up for the big dance? Or the toad who slept with your best friend? You got it. Become a writer. Surely you can think of a story that is in need of a pathetic cross-dressing hermaphrodite who gets killed by an inflatable doll. Slap the ex’s name on him. Just change the first letter of his last name. Heck, use your newfound power to help out your friends. Surely they can give you lists. Find a need for a character who has a tragically small penis or Irritable Bowel Syndrome. Become a writer and no one will cross you again lest they be found wearing hot pants while soliciting prostitution from sheep at the petting zoo in your next story. And hey, with the Internet, EVERYONE can be published.
8. High School Reunion Coming Up
So maybe you have done nothing with your life in the past 20 years. Who cares? All you have to do is find some out of print author and borrow his name for a bit. Hey, not like he is using it. Just tell those jerks you wanted to impress that you write under a pseudonym, and now you are “in between books.” Think of it this way, you can hold your head high that “you” accomplished something they never did, and, since you won’t have to see those wankers for another 5-10 years, no one will be the wiser. If you do get found out, it is just free publicity for the struggling dope you impersonated.
7. You drink a lot and it was either become a writer or attend AA
6. Can hang out with our friends somewhere other than the Renaissance festival
Renaissance festivals and Trekkie conventions can get expensive, especially when you work at a doughnut shop. And while living with Mom does help off-set the cost of rent, World of Warcraft isn’t exactly free. Form a critique group with your pals and all vow to become famous writers. Hey, you still get to hang out and talk about elves and wizards and what you would do if you were a vampire, only now it is considered “work.”
5. Because what other job comes with a dress code of thrift store jeans and juvenile T-shirts?
Do you just love Superman, Mickey Mouse, or even Mr. T? I pity the fool! Feel like expressing yourself on 100% pre-shrunk cotton? Hey, if you were a 37 year old accountant or airline pilot, others might think that an entire wardrobe comprised of Xena, Firefly and Battlestar Galactica T-Shirts meant you were emotionally immature or “touched in the head.” Now that you’re a writer, you can be…eccentric. Hell, throw in a beret just to be extra annoying.
4. Because “writer” sounds so much more glamorous than “unemployed” or “Starbucks Hot Beverage Consultant”
Refer to Number 8.
3. Because it is the next best thing to having your own reality show
Have a whacked out family or embarrassing habit? Write about it. The great thing is that now EVERYTHING is a tax write-off. Have an insatiable coffee, book and movie addiction? Then you are writer material. So go ahead and collect action figures, souvenir shot glasses and rare comic books. Do a “Tour of Pubs” and get plastered as you sample every beer under the sun. Or take that trip to Texas and ride the mechanical bull at Billy Bob’s. Just make sure you write about it, and then it is all deductable “research”…and the pictures your so-called friends post on their Facebook page of you being hauled away for Drunk and Disorderly Conduct are less “mortally embarrassing” and more “priceless promotion.” Just make sure you ask Denny’s for a reciept before they throw you out.
2. Because your family told you that you should be a doctor.
Don’t get along with your parents? Hey, go big or go home. What better way to insure your status as black sheep of the family than announce that you are giving up everything to become a writer? Short of announcing that you just converted to Scientology or that you sold all your stuff and are moving to a commune in New Mexico, telling the folks that you want to be a writer is guaranteed to make you the definitive pariah. And the plus side is that there is no studying chemistry or staying up all night to memorize Kreb’s Cycle. Just think of it this way, they will forgive you once you’re published anyway.
- Because you can be….GOD!
Yeah, now you get a glimpse of how it feels to be the Big Guy. What other job, short of an IRS agent or a meter maid gives the raw power of being able to make or destroy lives with ….a pen?
Happy writing! Until next time….
I love #1. I have said for years, a writer is the Almighty over his/her own universe. Except in ours, there is no free will.
A writer can keep a lot of bad guys at bay with a pen. “Never argue with anyone who buys ink by the gallon.”
I love to laugh and you have made me laugh! Yes, I want to be a writer. I have written a novel and now find out that I have to market my writing! Whatever happened to being “discovered” by an agent or a publisher? Ha! Go with the flow. I am finding it to be, as you point out, more fun than waiting to be discovered. Thank you.
Great blog, my favorite is #4 =)
Great idea. Inner Child Labor. You know, if everyone put their Inner Child to work writing, it could solve every social problem from addiction to jihad.
But I already AM God… well… a god…. okay… a minor demigod, but still
:picks self up off floor: Ok ok, breathing. That was hilarious. I totally have a series of bad bosses I intend to axe in my next series. And I’m definitely rocking the black sheep. Great list.
So true! I *love* this. As a matter of fact, this gave me an idea for a post on my blog (http://jamigold.com/2010/07/multiple-personality-disorder/). Thanks! 🙂
Embrace the insanity!
And yes, I gave you credit on my blog. 😉
I find it funny that so many of us grew up always wanting to be “normal” and it is exactly our “oddness” that makes great writers. I am so glad you were inspired. A good laugh is great for the soul.
Best justification for being a writer ever!
Number 8 made me laugh the loudest! Thanks for getting my late night writing session off to a great start! Just want to add that being a writer is awesome because we stick together and help each other out – a completely new concept to me. I’m used to being surrounded by cut throat jerks who don’t care if you succeed or not. Thanks again, Kristen, for more awesome and entertaining writing!
Kristen, so so funny…..am I allowed to say I am guilty of some of these. Which ones? Oh now that’s a secret 😀
Donna, LOL. Yeah…all of them are, to an extent me…ergo how I thought about them. although I used to name all of my bad guys Bill, LOL. No idea why *whistles innocently and looks away*.
Hi there. I have been following your blog for a short while and I think it is excellent. It is one of the reasons I get out of bed in the morning. Well…that is a bit of an exaggeration…but your blog is excellent.
I have selected you to be one of my fifteen recipients of the Versatile Blogger Award.
Shoot on over here http://www.chalkboarddad.com/2010/07/award-to-hang-on-my-fridge.html to check it out.
I continue to look forward to reading you.
Thanks, Brian for the award. I will pop on over to take a look. I really appreciate your following and am honored you thought of my blog :D.
Great post. Thanks so much for this one. BTW, I just bought your book on my Kindle and how was it I met you again? Oh that’s right, Twitter. That social media thing is pretty great.
It is! The coolest people I know and even my closest friends (and even my husband) I met on social media. Thanks, Annie for the support. Are you working on your fiction again?
Number 10 is right on. Something I figured out before reading this blog and my ultimate reason to write: I AM GOD, the almighty.
Hot men will be doing the things I want them to do.
Number 5 all the way!
I dressed that way when I was teaching ESL too, though. Only then I had to scramble for the blazer whenever the big boss dropped by. Now, who cares? 🙂
But eccentric covers more than just clothes and I love it. It saves you from having to explain anything you do, ever again.
Lol great list! Mine’s
1. Cuz I’m way too detail orientated for most of my family & friends to handle my critique of them & everything else all the time
2. Cuz my husband works too often & daycare costs too much for me to be anywhere but at home with the climbing 2 year old
3. Cuz I can’t call myself a home-maker with even the tiniest bit of respect for myself…
& 4. Cuz making up stories is the only thing I’ve ever been really good at
& 5. Writing’s the only thing I was ever really sure that I wanted to do for the rest of my life just for me…