I am writing Mom Writer with a Deadline because I'm going to be honest with you:
Writing books for a living is a hard business.
There, I said it. I admitted it. Notice, I didn't say "Writing books is hard." (They are hard, but not impossibly hard.)
Writing for a living is hard. Sometimes, insurmountably hard.
When I wrote traditionally, the advances were about 1/4 my last "real job" salary.
Now, as an independent publisher, I won't even tell you what the fraction is now. There are just too many zeroes after the decimal point.
I can say that what I make as an independent publisher does not help with major living costs. I make money for a swim lesson. A monthly subscription to Adobe's Creative Cloud. Five more pictures from Shutterstock.
But do I pay the monthly mortgage with what I bring in from writing? Do I pay the two car payments? Do I pay the crazy-high grocery bill?
No. My husband's job and my day job as an online college English teacher pay for those high-ticket items.
Even my day job isn't what I'd call the kind of money that could support the family. I make enough to pay for the food and the utilities. Unless it's winter. Then, no, I don't make enough for the too-high oil bill.
I have titled this blog "Mom Writer with a Deadline" because, well, I have a deadline. When Child #2 hits first grade in 2018 (when he'll be in school full-time), I need to be making a real living at writing books. The kind that could pay some mortgage payments. Some car payments (for the new cars we'll need by then, our old ones being 12 and 13 years old by then). Some retirement savings.
If I don't reach this goal of being a career writer by 2018...I have to get a "real" job. A go-to-work job. Most likely with cubicles and florescent lights and office politics. I've had that kind of job. It sucked lemons.*
(*I don't pooh-pooh this as a choice for anyone else. But I have an opportunity here--to build a career based on what I would love to do in four years--and I am going to work my bumbum off to get it.)
So here I am, publicly stating that I need to make this a career by 2018.
Right now, it is 2014. I know I have it in me to do this. To create a career that keeps me out of the cubicle and in a career that has me writing about others in cubicles--with co-workers who happen to be a coven of witches after her soul.
Back I go to writing, revising, and working my bumbum off...