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Do You Work Full-Time but Still Want to Be a Writer?
Yeah, me too.
And we’re not alone.
Several years back, author Joseph Epstein wrote that …
81 percent of Americans feel that they have a book in them — and should write it.
I agree wholeheartedly with Mr. Epstein’s sentiment here, because there is little worse in this world than to have the passion and potential to accomplish something BIG but to never take the action necessary to realize your dream.
What if you have a career outside of writing that you love or need? Can you keep your “day job” and still reach your writing goals?
I’m convinced you can, and the evidence is all around us.
Talking — or Typing — Turkey
Exhibit A is National Novel Writing Month, or NaNoWriMo.
During November of each year, hundreds of thousands of writers sign up to write the first draft of their novel over the course of 30 days, and tens of thousands “win” the challenge. In 2015, for example, more than 40,000 participants finished their draft of 50,000 words or more, complete with a full story arc.
I’ve taken on the last three NaNoWriMos, and it’s been an absolute eye-opener in terms of what is possible in a very short period of time, even with a very demanding job — not to mention an active teenager with a healthy extracurricular schedule and the constraints of a holiday-wrecked month.
The Middle Class of Writing
Exhibit B is every bibliophile’s favorite online shop — the Kindle Store. There are many millions of books available in Amazon’s world-changing marketplace, with more than 100,000 new titles released every month.
Do you think all those tomes are produced by full-time authors who spend their days in ivory towers and their nights touring the word through caviar-fueled book signings?
A close look at some of the books that climb into the genre best-seller lists will tell you that’s not the case … let’s just say that writing quality is not always the main driver of sales or popularity.
But in between the Stephen Kings of the world and the hacks who slap together a few pages of drivel and click “Submit” are thousands of writers producing solid work, both fiction and non-fiction. Even so, it’s clear from their sales totals that most of these folks aren’t making their living from writing.
Mostly, they write AND hold down other full-time jobs.
What’s Possible and How to Get There
I don’t present this “evidence” to discourage you but rather to assure you that you can engage in a meaningful writing career while you maintain your chosen profession.
If thousands can win NaNoWriMo with super busy lives, why can’t you write your novel?
If the Kindle Store is jam-packed with authors whose lives probably look a lot like yours, why can’t you achieve writing success, too?
The answer is that there is NO reason you can’t be an author. None.
But it’s not easy, and you can’t go about it in a haphazard manner. You need a plan, and you need the right tools to help you achieve your writing dreams in the midst of your busy work and home life.
And that’s what The Moonlighting Writer is all about: helping you to …
Keep Your Job. Live Your Dream.
What you’ll find here are a combination of practical tips to help you get the most out of your limited writing time, inspiration to keep you going when times get tough, and a catalog of tools to help you along your journey.
This site will evolve as my needs and your needs change, so check back often to see what’s new. One of the best ways to make sure you don’t miss anything is to sign up for The Moonlighting Writer email list:
And, I really, really want your feedback and input.
What problems are you facing in your work?
What types of articles and resources inspire you to keep going?
What sorts of tools would make your writing life easier?
Tell me about you and what you want from this site, and I’ll do my best to get the resources in front of you that will help you reach your writing goals.
Thanks for reading, and happy writing!