The High Price of Time
I took this week away from blogging, writing, and everything computer related in order to attend the Salt Lake ComicCon Fan Experience. In September, at the last Comiccon, I ran around trying to go from panel to panel that I wanted to attend, and realized there was not enough time between them and ended up missing most of them. This time for Fan-X, we planned small and only wanted to attend a couple of them. Big or small on the plans, both events ended up with the same issues, there was not enough time. I took the time this weekend to evaluate what I need to complete my edits and work for the Wyld Hunt Hotline book one, and fear that it will not get done because I need two things that are the most precious commodity in life, help and time.
Don’t get me wrong, Fan-X was fun!
I got to volunteer on Wednesday, helping out with pre-registration and talking to customers about cosplay and events and everything geek related. The jokes about Multi-Pass from The Fifth Element were all day long. Since they had over 700 volunteers planned for the event, along with security, I planned on enjoying the rest of the event.
Thursday was a mass of confusion that started with trying to enter from the west end, and ended up with us leaving just to lose the crowd. We attended one celebrity panel but they let the three p.m. crowd in and told them they could stay for the four p.m. panel, and we almost ended up with no seat because they were not thinking about those wanting in only at four. The lines for the celebrity that I wanted to see were outrageous for 7 hours straight, and others were only going to be there on Friday or Saturday.The highlight of Thursday was getting to reconnect briefly with MichaelBrent Collings and his family at their booth, who remembered me but more so my boyfriend Ben, who loves discussion weapons, style, and martial arts with anime.
Friday I had two highlights of my day. An unnamed celebrity not only gave me their signature, but as my boyfriend told them about my book, gave us their agents email and told us to contact them to do the audio book once its published. Someday I hope to make some agent happy. The other highlight was having Sandra Tayler come over to me, recognize me from the last LTUE convention, and ask how I and my writing are doing. The fact someone very busy as she is would recognize me and ask about my work, was amazing. I cried when I got home that night because it touched a very basic need in me, the need to connect on some level with humanity.
My saturday was spent at home recuperating from the event. With my depression, anxiety, and lymph system issues, I had too much pain to endure another day. I missed the panels as well as the chance to see Saturday only guests like Sir Patrick Stewart, and Twitch from So You Think You Can Dance. Ben went on his own, and ended up coming home three hours later due to huge crowds and crazy fun also being too much for him. We joked briefly about turning forty soon for me and how we feel old.
It Drove The Writing Message Home
There is already a small publisher interested in my book, as well as a few friends who simply like what I write. Unfortunately, as I realize so many things I neglected during this week of conferences and arranging babysitters, I see that I can’t afford what it takes to achieve my goals and I am afraid.
I barely make it as a mother, hope I make it as Ben’s girlfriend/wife (an inside joke), and as a human. I spend most of my time at home, safe within the confines of a small two bedroom apartment and spend my focus on getting my daughter to school and small enjoyments of topics and alone time with my boyfriend. My appearance, and quirks have much to be desired by others yet I find good things about myself enough to keep fighting the good fight for my daughter. The problem is under the layer of expenses and medical issues, I am buried alone.
My family never had time for my interests when my mother was alive. I barely have contact with them now that she is gone. My daughter has autism and cannot understand the work, let alone be a reciprocative audience for my adult themed fiction. My boyfriend writes fanfiction and his own scifi/fantasy and we have an understanding to not burden each other with our writing, to keep cross contamination or envy to a minimum. I have a couple of friends that enjoy my writing but have no opinion, professional or otherwise, to help my progress. And, those who have tried to help me either work with different genres, and don’t understand the adult themed urban fantasy, or don’t have time to give me the assistance I need. Some are slightly offended by the topics of it.
I Am A Weak-Willed Individual.
I thought finding a beta reader would be enough. Unfortunately, beta readers have to have time, and most do not have time for me. I need advice on physical fitness I can’t afford. I need someone who has the time to beta read at least three chapters a week and help with edits. I hope somewhere there is someone who can read through posts, content, or plans and understand some of it. I wish there was someone I could share the process with, that can take time a couple days a week to just talk to me and offer some encouragement.
Those who beta read often deal with their own work, or jobs and don’t have time to talk a couple times a week, or don’t have time to read and edit and be a friend. With my physical and mental issues, I wonder if there is anyone who is rich in time. Its the one commodity that all of us seem poor in. Maybe someone can tell the tooth fairy to trade commodities.
In The Meantime…
I hope to help with Westercon in July, and if I am lucky they will let me run a geek panel. I keep trying to blog for the A-Z Challenge in April, keep contact through my personal blog, and work through edits in hope that I am not editing my work to death.
I find solace in my daughter’s smile, my boyfriend’s hugs, and my casual poke back and forth with those who know me on fb or twitter. I meet amazing authors at these conventions like Sandra Tayler, Michaelbrent Collings, Howard Tayler, Peter David, Robinson Wells, Larry Correia, and Peter Orullian.
I can’t afford much, but it seems none of us can afford time… Any thoughts on how to purchase it would be appreciated lol
I try rather hard not to think about financial motives while writing. My main goal is to get the stories out of my head, finally release the burden of living in a fantasy world that I’m unable to share. The promise I made to my family and friends to let people read what I write is an ongoing battle, but it’s too hard to not think about financial issues.
After three years of not having medical for my daughter due to disability, I finally got it. The first thing we did was go see the special dentist they have at Primary Childrens Hospital for disabled children. Most autistic children have issues with diet, brushing or other functions that greatly impact their tooth health. Some refuse to brush, some won’t open their mouth, and some scream or bite. My daughter did none of this. She listened to the dentist, and even bit on something so they could take an x-ray of her mouth.
I was very proud of Jordan for letting the dentist in. Despite all the issues and years of training it took to get her to brush her teeth, there was still one cavity. For her, it means they get to knock her out just to fix the cavity. I freak out every time they knock her out for anything. This will be the fourth time in her life and I hold a pit of anxiety just for it.
The other thing that came with getting medical, was the bill collector hounds that circle. I pay as much as I can every months to try to get bills down, but all my back bills are medical, and most of them are overdue. I can’t do as much as others with the limited budget of disability.
I try not to write when the financial pressure gets too much. I worry about making the latest book everything it can be to be a success, and writing comes out wrong. So, I haven’t edited or wrote anything in two weeks until the A-Z blog challenge. Putting the bills aside, it’s time for me to restart. Harder with financial issues and nobody to help get me through.
I also got distracted by a marathon of all eight seasons of 24. Cramming was a requirement as the new 12 episode season of 24 starts May 5th. Comiccon Fan-X is April 17th. Looking forward to Karl Urban, Nathan Fillion and James Marstars… and others.
So I am going to post a request for two alpha readers. To fold through 3 chapters a week, and hopefully keep my spirits positive while I edit through my earlier drafts. I will post on this in a day or so. In the meantime I look for reasons to keep writing, and hold back the fear.
My goal with this new setup is to blog once a week on personal thoughts and updates on my books. It’s supposed to help my mental health as well as find new ways to re-integrate myself into the world.
For those of you who don’t know, I am a 39 year old single parent in Utah. Although pen names don’t stay secret, I adapted mine in deference to some solitude for my daughter who has autism, Jordan. My boyfriend, Ben, is 41 and our birthdays are only three days apart. I have a love of music, reading, history, and tabletop style games. I also claim an associate certification in unit clerking, double majored in college (Music and history education), became a certified truck driver for eight years, and have various physical and mental health issues.
In the simple form I am an introvert with a habit of recluse behavior and self esteem issues. Since having my daughter, I have worked hard at changing this in small steps. One of these steps includes my writing.
To date I have written 27 manuscripts (full finish) and after getting the ideas out of my head, I threw them away. Publishing was never a goal of mine before now. My imagination is like a rampant dragon, breathing fire on silly ideas and sinking its teeth into bone-ripping paths to other worlds. I’m like a cake decorator that had too much fun with the icing stencils. You might think that I wasted my writing, but I live with a constant fear that nobody will understand what worlds float in my head and tried to pursue noble hobbies and paths to make my way in the world. That changed last year.
My mother passed away, cancer, a couple of years ago. The more she would push for me to publish, the less I wrote. It wasn’t fair of her to put pressure on me, but it wasn’t fair that everything I wrote she refused to read either. She always joked that I would publish after her passing, and I told her the thought’s insane. My boyfriend of eight years, Ben, urged me to quit hiding in the ‘writers closet’ and try to get my latest work published.
I have nothing to lose at this point in the goal. Nothing could be said that I haven’t used as an excuse to hide my work from others. My fears may imagine everyone who reads my work dies of boredom, but I know that won’t really happen, mostly. I take courage from other writers on twitter and solace that this goal is not futile.
I’ve taken my latest project, and had it critiqued at a writing conference. Technically, there was no critique. The editor that glanced at my query and couple of pages simply said they want my work – to finish whatever edits I’m doing and submit to them. That ‘critique’ was the single most relieving advice I had to date. Now, I’m editing and trying to become part of the world again, even if its just online.
I hope to post once a week here. I also put various information on my latest world out to the internet. You can find a peak glimpse of the world at WyldHuntHotline.com
It promises to be an exciting and terrifying foray into publishing and I am honored you took the time to come along for the ride!
Wish me luck,