It's still my mantra.
Yes, I am working in retail, which I don't hate...I feel very comfortable in this job. So far, the managers at Kohl's have placed me on register, in the stock room, the sales floor, Amazon returns, and taking purchases to vehicles per the "no contact shopping" program. I've learned how to make clearance tickets, look up prices, check in inventory, and use the "cash register," which is basically a computer. So, I am bringing in some money, NOT living off the government, and seeing people above the age of sixteen.
BUT...I am working on a few things to help me gain an audience for my teen fiction. True, I don't write the magical creatures type stories that are so popular these days, but someone might find my stories worthwhile, and I have so many of them in near completion.
Years ago, I opened an account on Wattpad. And then forgot about it. What is Wattpad, you may ask? (https://www.wattpad.com/home) It's a platform for writers to gain exposure to their writing. People can upload their novels, short stories, whatever they have, to the site and then make friends in the Wattpad community and share their work. Sure, you start off posting work for free. And maybe work up to becoming a paid writer. But my purpose here is to add a story chapter by chapter each day and force myself into editing a story that my agent turned down. This has given me a goal to work towards, and, as most writers know, we need goals or we flounder. I've been floundering too long. Oh...my Wattpad name: KimberlyGore8. Look for me if you join! Right now, I've joined a Wattpad writing competition (paired up with Reese's). At least it motivated me to create a story, even if it's not my best work ever.
And in continuation...
I've also continued working on my Revision 411 blog. It's a place where I give free writing advice. But most importantly, I upload work I wrote many moons ago (before I became as strong of a writer as I am now) and I go through and edit/revise this work, explaining what I'm doing to improve it. (Find it here: https://revision411.wordpress.com/)
I have two friends whom are motivators for me: Todd Brasel and Dave Sakmyster. I check in with them and vice-versa to make sure we are accomplishing something. Writing can be a lonely endeavor. It's good to have friends who understand the frustration. Especially right now, when COVID-19 prevents us from properly socializing with others. I'm also grateful for friends like Sue Savard and Dave Sanchez, who check in on me to make sure I'm doing okay. Because, honestly, sometimes I'm not. It helps to know people care about me. It helps a lot!
And this weekend...
Not only do I work at Kohl's, but I'm presenting on how to self-publish books, both ebooks and paperbacks. The meeting is through Zoom, and presented by Lilac City Rochester Writers. (http://lcrwriters.com/) I sure have a lot of links for you in this post! I will probably upload a Google Slides presentation to YouTube for those who can't make the meeting. Anyhoo...it's taking a lot of time out of my already busy day to put it together, but gosh am I enjoying it! Why can't putting together presentations be my day job???
One more thing...
An editing job came in a couple weeks ago. An entire novel. So, I sent out some sample pages of how I edit and he and I will discuss how much work needs to be done on the manuscript and what my pay should be. I usually charge $30/hr. But this book is really long. Might cost him a mortgage payment when all is said and done. But I am willing to negotiate pricing for people who are serious about getting something published. As long as I don't end up making so little I can't even afford printer ink. After all, I do love helping others. But I have to survive along the way. Money helps with that whole "having a place to sleep" thing.
So, I'm saying Never Give Up.
Today, I am feeling all right. Everyone needs something to look forward to something. And continuing to stick my toe in the writing pool prepares me for the deep dive. Because it's coming. Just you wait.