It’s no secret I used to be a big gamer geek. I got hooked on role-playing games in high school and after a ten year absence from them, I was reintroduced to the world of role playing werewolves and vampires.
Since the only way I could play was with my friends up in Worcester, MA (I lived in New York at the time, 3 hours away), I had to find another way to get my fix. I found other players in Yahoo Groups and we played our own way through creative writing.
For the next several years I don’t think one day went by when I didn’t write. When I wasn’t at the computer, I was writing my posts down in a notebook to put up later. My mind constantly churned with new twists and turns to throw at the players.
I know there are a lot of you out there who share a similar story. But here’s the thing: Eventually you’re going to reach a point where you’ll get tired of spinning your wheels. You’ll wake up one day with a fire to CREATE. You’ll look at all those pages and pages of never ending game stories you’ve written and realize you could have written at least ten full-length novels by now.
I won’t lie to you. You won’t get rich quick writing a novel. It took ten years for George R. R. Martin’s Game of Thrones to get to HBO, and I’m sure Charlene Harris’ Sookie Stackhouse series took a few years to turn into True Blood. J.K. Rowling spent many years fighting through rejections before the Harry Potter series took off. And do you know when J.R.R. Tolkien first penned The Hobbit? In 1937. And it wasn’t until 1949 that the Lord of the Rings trilogy hit the public.
Yes, his stories have been around that long.
Why Do It?
Why do we do anything? If you’re writing as a hobby, you’re obviously getting some enjoyment from it. What is it that makes us want to take that next step and put those stories out there into the world?
Some do it for fame and fortune…even though that’s a very long, hard row to hoe. Others do it because they just want to prove they can. And still others do it for the sheer joy of telling a story and sharing it with as wide an audience as possible.
I’ll admit, I’m not opposed to fame and fortune. I wouldn’t mind seeing Loyalties up on the silver screen or have a theme park or two. I’ll also admit I wanted to write a novel just to prove I could finish something.
Above all, I really do love telling stories. I love getting lost in these imaginary worlds, whether they’re mine or someone else’s. I enjoy collaborating with Wendi and seeing where it all will take us.
Why Not Do It?
Seriously, what have you got to lose? You don’t have to release your story to the whole world if you don’t want to. Write it for your family, write it for your kids, or your nieces and nephews. Write it for your godchild. Leave a legacy behind. Write it for yourself and check it off of your lifetime to-do list.
With so many options out there for self-publishing, there’s no reason why you can’t.
However, my Mom always said “Make sure you always look your best when you go out, you never know when you’ll be discovered.” That may sound contradictory to what I said before about making it big with your novel, but it really isn’t. Do your best anyway, even if it’s just for yourself. In some ways, it’s when we’re only working on our hobbies for ourselves that we do create our best work.
Not all hobbies have to turn into businesses, but sometimes we do get lucky and it just turns out that way. Especially if you throw your heart and soul into it. Passion always shines.