Why do you Love Being an Author?

During a recent email chat with an author friend we were discussing how frustrated we become when other work pulls us away from writing our novels. I commented that it was probably because other work didn’t give us the same sense of satisfaction as writing novels. This led me to thinking – just what is it about being an author that is so satisfying? So I thought it would be interesting to try to pin down some of the reasons:

Escapism – When writing a novel you can escape into your own world which can be anything you want it to be. That does beg the question – why is my writing world full of violence, bad language and warped characters, and why does that give me so much satisfaction? Hmmm!

Creativity – I gain a sense of fulfilment in having created something from nothing and I’ve no doubt it’s the same for other authors. Your book is like your baby that you feel proud of and it gives you tSatisfied Readerhat special feeling of having nurtured it from start to finish. A lot of us are familiar with the buzz of holding the print version of our own book in our hands or seeing it on the shelf in our local book store or library.

Reader Satisfaction – It’s lovely to receive feedback from readers and know that somebody has enjoyed one of your books.

Organisation and Planning – In the (non-writing) world of work, good organisation was always one of my strengths and I think that both non-fiction and fiction books require good organisation skills. You have to be able to plan the chapters, and carefully interweave the main plot and sub-plots. Organisation and planning are also important in achieving a good balance with the pacing of a novel. Because of my organised nature I actually enjoy these challenges.

Kudos – If I’m honest it’s always flattering when people take an interest in what I do although I also get a little embarrassed sometimes. Even though there are increasing numbers of people publishing books, it still attracts a lot of attention when you say that you have written and published a book.Money Pile

Huge Potential for Financial Gain – Yes, there’s a golden carrot dangling on the end of that metaphorical piece of string. The trouble is, every time you try to grasp the carrot, somebody yanks the string and you find you’ve got a bit further to go until you reach your reward. But as long as we can see the carrot, we’ll keep trying to grab it.

I’m speaking for the majority of authors, of course. There are some who are already reaping large financial rewards, which provides further encouragement for the rest of us.

Now for the things I don’t love so much:

I don’t think I’m very good at the whole marketing and promotion thing. I’ve never been one for selling myself. I’d rather shy away and get on with my writing but I expect a lot of authors are like that, which is probably why we choose to do what we do.

TimeThe other negative aspect for me is that there aren’t enough hours in the day. This is another one that I often hear other authors complain about, especially independent authors. It would be wonderful if we could devote all of our working hours to writing and have somebody else take care of all the promotion, editing, proofreading and formatting etc. but for most of us that isn’t feasible.

I’d love to hear your thoughts on this one. What is it about being an author that you love or are there any aspects of being an author that you’re not so keen on?

Anyone fancy a carrot?


14 thoughts on “Why do you Love Being an Author?

  1. I think every author reading this will be nodding in agreement. I once heard a lady in a wheelchair say that books gave her the chance to travel the world without ever having to leave her home. What a lovely thought! As for the down side, I am known for being very talkative (in other words I never shut up) but I really find self-promotion very difficult. Maybe we all need a ‘promotion buddy’ to do it for us?

    • Thanks for your feedback Marilyn. Yes, the self-promotion is definitely a tricky one, isn’t it? What makes it more difficult for authors is that reading is so subjective – no matter how good your books are, you’re never going to please everyone. 🙂

  2. I never have enough hours in the day. That’s my biggest gripe. And I too love the planning stage– it’s exciting to see the structure of your WIP and see where it leads. As far as the carrot goes… I think we all want to be able to make enough money to sustain us. How and what’s involved to get there is where it gets tricky.

    • Thanks for your comments Sue. There’s never enough time, is there? I think if I lived to be 100 I still wouldn’t have written (and read) all the books that I want to. Regarding the carrot, my goal is similar to yours. I’ve never dreamt of becoming a millionaire from my writing; earning a good salary from it would be enough for me. 🙂

  3. I think the thing I like best about it is having an outlet for my creativity but as you know only too well Diane my work is full on, I’d like to add ‘at the moment’, but its always the same and I struggle to find the odd hour or two to actually write and as you have pointed out to me, quite correctly, that level of work kills off the creativity. So it’s a catch 22 situation isn’t it, being self employed I can’t say no to work, I need it to pay the bills which lets face it writing is hardly likely to do until you can build up a huge body of work etc and all that takes time…which I don’t have…

    So it comes down to just doing what you can, when you can and that includes the sales and marketing and I have completely taken my eye off the ball with that at the moment, but I don’t think any author really likes that side of it – we’d all rather just be shut up somewhere quiet writing…what bliss that would be 🙂

    • Thanks for your feedback Georgia. Yes, it would be wonderful just to spend the whole time writing, wouldn’t it? Maybe one day we’ll make enough money from our writing so that it pays for itself and we can afford to pay someone to do all the marketing and promotion for us. Ah well, we can dream. 🙂

  4. Thanks to Georgia Rose for pointing me to your fabulous blog. What do I love about being an author? I’m a control freak, so I love that I’m in charge of my own goals and agenda, that I’m in control of my hours, and that I don’t have to change out of what I wore to bed the night before. Or, sometimes, the night before that… (Luckily, my house has high stone walls around the garden!) Sure, I sometimes remember the good old days when I had minions, but at least now the only one I report to has been known to bark and lick her own privates.

      • Thanks for recommending my blog to Barb, Georgia. That’s very good of you. I’m sorry for the delay in getting back but I’ve been having Internet problems and my connection is still very slow. Thanks also for nominating me for the WIP award. I’ll respond on your blog once my connection improves. 🙂

    • Thank you for visiting my blog and for leaving a comment Barb. I’m sorry for the delay in responding but I’ve been having problems with my Internet connection. I know what you mean about not having to change out of what you wore to bed the night before. I often get so carried away on the PC that I’m still in my dressing gown at lunch time. I dread the postman delivering parcels. I must check out your blog when my Internet improves but it’s taken about a half hour just to access my site. 🙂

  5. I love the process of writing, reading, and meeting other authors. For me it’s a wonderful journey not a necessarily a destination, although I’d love to he read by millions, right now I’m thrilled with interacting with you, and discussing the fascinating process of reading and writing 🙂 Thank you for asking 💖

    • Thank you for your feedback Luccia. It’s a pleasure interacting with you too. I agree with you that writing is a journey rather than a destination – there are always new goals to aim for. 🙂

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.