I’m going to find out in about three weeks– “by February 21,” the website says– if I got that teacher creativity grant I applied for. You may remember me talking about this; my grant basically boiled down to “give me money so that I can write this summer instead of working,” except, hopefully, a bit more compelling.
This is no secret– if I could quit my day job and do whatever I wanted, I’d write. And getting paid ten grand to sit down and write a novel would be amazing. There have been periods in my life– I’m in the midst of one of them now– where I was writing fairly intensively and periods where I was writing very little, and without exception I have always been happier when I was writing a lot. I can handle writing nonfiction easily; witness, oh, about 315 of the posts on this blog, daily or damn close to it for the last six months. Fiction is like pulling teeth. There’s nothing like the feeling of finishing a story; the process of writing a story is pure pain. I remember seeing Richard Bach say once that he was only able to write fiction when the pain of not writing fiction became greater than the pain of writing fiction. Which is a fun way of thinking about it. Of course, Richard Bach also said this:
Argue for your limitations, and sure enough, they’re yours.
…so maybe I ought to shut up and just write fiction instead of complaining about how hard it is.
I don’t know how many of you stuck it out through all eight or nine or however many parts there were of The Benevolence Archives 5. Maybe starting with the fifth story wasn’t the brightest idea I ever had, but it at least convinced me to finish it, which is why I put the first part up in the first place. The installments are averaging eight to twelve Likes each, which isn’t as many as I generally pick up on posts, but that doesn’t bug me much; not everybody comes to WordPress to read fiction– I’ve skipped over short stories myself on any number of blog posts, so wtvr– and even those who like to read short stories aren’t always into science fiction. If those Likes are evidence that anyone at all is reading it, I’m gonna take that as a win. Then again, there are already (checks) nine Likes on the post previous to this one, which basically just says hey this isn’t a post but maybe there will be one later, so maybe y’all just click on stuff sometimes. I dunno.
So… (deep breath) serious question: Let’s say, hypothetically, that I knock BA5 out of first-draft status (which I’m gonna do anyway), bundle it with three of the other four stories (one’s not done, because I realized I needed to write this one first) and then put it up somewhere as an ebook, for, say, like, $2.
If, hypothetically, I were to do that, is there anybody out there who would be willing to buy it? Hypothetically, of course.