There are a few things I want to do with my writing over the next few months.
For one thing, I need to start taking commissions again because I don’t start my summer job until July and I have student loans I want to start repaying as soon as possible. I don’t like the idea of being in debt for 25 years. I don’t want to be almost 50 when my debt is paid off, because that could be the majority of my adult life, and that’s absolutely atrocious. (Seriously. FASFA is a scam and it’s inappropriate to call a loan financial aid. It’s not. Take a pound of my flesh while you’re at it, United States Government.) I write prose, and some people enjoy my writing enough to have paid for it in the past, so maybe people will be willing to do so again. It’ll also keep me on my 1500 words-a-day goal if I have a specific person who expects me to write things for them.
I’ve been playing around with the idea of creating a zine, because I like the idea of continuing to edit writing, and also because zines are a lot cheaper to produce than journals. In theory. The whole thing with that is that I’d have to curate submissions and I’d probably want to bring on a couple of other people to help me, but I’m not sure exactly if any of my friends are interested, or even what the theme of the zine would be. It’s something I’m still going to think about and maybe pursue.
If I can actually finish some more short stories (which is a long-shot, since completing things lately has not been my strong-suit), maybe I’ll put together another collection of them in a chapbook or something and then peddle them around. Independent publishing isn’t a boon, but it’s worth building up a body of work or something.
When the whole Odyssey thing has finished playing out (I’m finishing up by the end of this month after setting up my successor for the role of editor-in-chief), I’d like to keep writing for an online publication. Ideally, I’d want to write for one that actually pays more than doesn’t (writing takes time and effort and it’s not fair to ask people to write for free, especially if they’re good and even more so if you’re profiting from their work), but if I can keep writing and if people started seeing my name around, maybe people would actually care about the writing I’m doing. I guess I’ll just try to become more prolific.
I’ll keep writing this blog because it’s something I’ve been enjoying a lot more than I thought I would back when I started it in February.
Malcolm Gladwell tells us in Outliers that in order to really master anything, you have to do it for 10,000 hours. That sounds like a lot at first, but when I think about it, every hour you spend doing something does add up. Writing is a skill just like any other, and while I think it’s possible to have an inherent draw towards it, you can’t get better unless you keep writing. If I think about how long I’ve been writing (starting with middle school, even though that stuff makes me cringe), maybe collectively I’m getting close to that magic number. Maybe not; I can’t do math very well anymore, and to be honest, I don’t feel like calculating all of the hours I have put into writing. It’d have to include editing and reading, too, but I’m not sure those would count in that collective total. Who knows.
In any case, look for continued writing from me. That’s the goal for the summer.
Hopefully other people hold me to it.