I am a creature of avarice and cynicism. Pure altruism, idealistic devotion, working on faith — these are all grand, wonderful things that I have a serious problem operating with. If I’m doing something, if I’m working towards something, I need there to be a concrete goal. A carrot on the end of the stick. I want my paycheck. I want my experience points, and if I break all the jars there better be some fucking rupees shining inside.
So, how am I able to keep working on my self-published fantasy series? A difficult task with innumerable pitfalls, hurdles, frustrations, despairs, and sorrows — a task with little immediate gain, far less ultimate reward…and an atom’s breadth chance of eventual success in the world at large.
Come close, let me whisper it to you. What I see at the end of the road, my dream job.
Reason #5: The Dream
I wake up in the morning around 8:30. I lay in bed for a bit and collect myself, maybe thumb through the internets conveniently distilled onto my phone. Then I get up, conduct my morning toilette, walk the dogs, feed the dogs, pet the dogs. Household tended to, I head to my office.
At first it’s just a desk in the back of the house, but slowly as time passes it morphs into an office. Some quiet corner made of brick and steel, with comfy leather chairs and an upstairs loft where I’ve constructed a nap room.
I sit down, sometime around 9:30-10. I flip open my noble Chromebook, or jab the spacebar of the hulking computorial behemoth I’ve purchased with my latest writing advance.
And then I write.
I write stupid stories, and funny stories, and stories full of blood and woe. Stories about Jonas and Rime and their long, strange journey.
And somewhere out there in the stranger world, people pay to read them. They pay me enough that this is all I need to do.
Some hours later, friends wander into my office and I stop working. I go for a long late lunch, then come back to my office to write some more.
I knock off in the early afternoon to beat the traffic, and because it’s time to go pet the dogs.
I walk home, planning the evening and letting the day’s stories settle and writhe in the weird back 40 of my brain.
The next day I do it again.
That’s my dream. My carrot, my XP, my rupees in the jar.
That’s why the book is free. Because that dream is way better than the buck I’ll make from you buying it.
So give it a shot, eh?