Writing As A Career

I found out that I wanted to publish novels when I was about 13. All I wanted to do was publish a book, be the next J.K Rowling. This was around the time I started working on my first “novel” that story I wrote became The Stray It was completely different, the characters, the setting, the plot. But when I finished writing that story I thought it was the best thing ever, because I wrote it, I shared it with my friends and teachers.

Looking back now, that version, called Moon Shadows at the time is the absolute worst thing I have ever read. The characters were flat, there was no sense of scene in my descriptions. But that was my starting point. When I realised that it needed work, I rewrote it. Continuously. And I kept getting better and better each time. work through different plots and characters until the story became more solid and I was keeping parts that I liked and changing things I didn’t.

I didn’t focus on another career option in school because this is what I wanted to do. I wanted to make teenagers feel the way I did when I read Harry Potter for the first time, or Eragon, or Percy Jackson, just a few of my favourite series. I might never reach their level, but I want to try.

Once high school crept up on me my parents would ask what I want to do at uni, if i was to go to uni. they kept asking me, until it drove me insane. But I understood, writing is not a viable career option, most of the time. Especially not in Australia, we have a very small publishing industry and most of it is in Sydney, I live in Brisbane and I’m not prepared to move without reason.

I’m not saying that it isn’t possible to make enough money from writing, but I’m a novel writer, even these blog posts are a little outside my area. So I searched for another career option. I’ve ended up at teaching. It’s my intention to teach the value of English and Literature to my intended audience.

There are ways one can make a career in the writing and/or publishing industry. You could become a ghost writer, writing down the words of other authors who may have difficulty doing so themselves. There are transcribers, your job would be to sit in meetings, court or another professional setting and relay everything being said. One a chance you could submit short stories into competitions all over your country and hope you earn one of the prizes.

To be honest there aren’t very many options unless you have written the next bestseller, even then in might not be enough to live out your life. My best advice in this regard for any new writer, is to find something else you’re passionate about, and make that your day job, if you end up becoming the next J.K Rowling then by all means quit your day job. I however would drive myself nuts with that much time on my hands. Good Luck.