Monday, August 30, 2010

Thinking About the Future

All writers dream of a point in their careers when they can quit their day jobs and work full-time as a writer, of course this is a rare occurrence. Your odds of this happening to you is most likely worse than hitting the lottery. It makes you wonder why the hell you keep at it. All the work, rejection and self-flaggration for little monetary reward. And, let's admit it, the printed word is not flourishing and the business models of all of the publishing companies suck. Very few people are going to get rich.

But the purpose of this post is not why I continue to write and dream of publishing - the answer to that probably involves questioning my mental well-being and overall intelligence, and let's not go there. No, the reason I'm tap-tap-taping away at the keyboard is to discuss the financial stability of the deranged dreamer - in this case a hopeless writer with delusions of publishing success (hint: that's me). Right now I make shit for money despite the fact that I do have a college degree, actually two, one of those being a Master's. All the newspapers and magazine taut the importance of a college education in expanding your earning ability. That's horseshit, by the way, if you live in a relatively economically depressed area with little job potential, unless you're a social worker.

But, I continue to delude myself, and have decided to do something to make much more money than I do now. In order to spread joy and contentment wherever I go, I've decided to become... a waiter. Oh, wait, that's a Monty Python sketch. No, I've decided to get an MBA. I know, that means more education, which hasn't really done much in terms of filling my bank account, but the earning potential does increase with those three letters after my name - more so than the current MFA does.

What this means is that I will have even less time to write. That dream becomes a bit dimmer, though not completely gone. At this point, it is probably more important that I consider my family's financial well-being rather than fulfilling some notion of publishing notoriety. I guess the good news is that the writing bug will never die, and I do intend on writing - and who knows, having less time may force me to utilize what free time I do have and force me to actually write more. Stranger things have happened, I suppose.

Oh, well.


Gerald So said...

Good luck, Steve.

Bryon Quertermous said...

It's a move and one I'm considering myself. There's nothing better for the creative juices of a crime writer than to get into the business world. Healthcare, where I am, is even better. Good luck.

Stephen Blackmoore said...

Just saw this.

Understand your decision completely. Been doing that myself for 20 years. There are times when you have to make a pragmatic choice.

That said, don't give up. Dude, seriously, you're too good not to be writing. Even if it's in those stolen moments between homework and putting the kids to bed.

Best of luck. As much as possible, we got your back.

Steve Allan said...

Thanks, guys. So far the course work hasn't been too taxing. I have to take a bunch of undergrad classes before the MBA since my degrees aren't in business. And taking undergrad after grad school is like being stuck on the easy level of a video game with no way of getting to anything challenging. Oh well.

I have been able to keep up my (pathetic) writing pace.

Stephen Blackmoore said...

Oh. Well in that case, pick it up, slacker. Jeez.