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  1. Comment on Where do you work and how did you get there? in ~life

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    I'm a pulp novelist. I write a lot of books that won't change your life, but might entertain you (though sorry, I don't share on forums). I've published 3 novels so far this year. I'm hoping to...

    I'm a pulp novelist. I write a lot of books that won't change your life, but might entertain you (though sorry, I don't share on forums). I've published 3 novels so far this year. I'm hoping to publish 10 total in 2019, because I had a pretty crummy 2018 and need to get back to work and dig myself out of a bit of a hole I got myself into.

    I've always wanted to write. I studied English and Creative Writing in college, and then I ended up in grad school and got an MFA in writing. I've worked a lot of odd jobs. I worked in advertising for a bit, I managed a dog walking company, and then I worked in IT consulting for 6 years.

    It was looking like IT was going to be my thing until suddenly I realized that working that job had sucked me of my passion for technology and made me really dislike helping people. I made good money, I bought all the toys I wanted, but I was pretty depressed. There was nowhere to really go in the company I was at, and the changes I was trying to make (organizational and triage tools) as someone in a more senior role were basically ignored by my bosses who were happy with the very disorganized status quo. I tried to quit once, was convinced to stay, and then a year later I quit for real.

    With some money in the bank and no plan, I jumped into self-publishing. It worked for me, and now 4 years later I'm still chugging along. Self-publishing comes with a certain connotation, but in my circumstance I pretty much run a one person publishing company. It's hard, but it allows me to do what I want for a living. Plenty of ups and downs, financially it hasn't been as good as my IT role, but I'm 100% in charge of my own time and I don't have to go into corporate offices anymore.

    Some days I consider finding a job, maybe part-time, just to get that social aspect of working back into my life. Working at home for yourself can get lonely. I kind of want to work on a boat, or maybe in a National Park. I really don't know. I want to do things that help inform my writing. I've considered going back to IT but I honestly don't want to dress business-casual ever again and I imagine that if I did go back into it, I'd probably soon feel like I did when I left. I'm also getting to the point where I'm probably aging out of being hirable. I don't know. Maybe I'm wrong about that.

    I really don't know what the rest of my life holds. I go back and forth on whether or not I should make a run at actually becoming a known name in writing. I used to care about that, wanting to be famous, but I don't anymore. I think fame in our culture is toxic, and I really don't want strangers to know me or look up to me or care about me. I just want privacy. But building a well known name brings with it job security. Maybe I wouldn't have to write 10 books a year if a lot of people knew me. Then again, most writers don't make anything from their work and have to teach. At least I get to write full-time.

    Where I currently live, there are opportunities to work on boats and in a National Park. I'm still figuring out how to get to that point, though. I'm guessing it'll start with a lot of volunteering. We'll see.

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