Authors, Writers, Publishers, and Book Readers
A co-worker visited my store and handed me an envelope with a copy of my recent book,'Who's Minding the Store?' He said he visited a store he handles in Lake Forest, CA where Melinda works. Turns out Melinda bought a copy of my book and asked him to bring it to me in San Diego for me to autograph.
Any author will tell you we love personally autographing our books. I suppose some will call that vanity, but I call it pride
In my book she had an envelope addressed to me stating how much she enjoyed my book. She wrote how she'd been in retail for years and could relate with the scenes between employees, customers, managers, and the like. She said she even knew a few stories that were funnier than mine (I'll bet she's right, too!). That's okay. I've long-since learned humility.
The most special part of her note was her mentioning how I inspired her to follow her passion and write. She mentioned how she has always wanted to write horror stories, and after reading my book she now believed it was not only possible, but something she should do.
You may find this odd, but I hear this a lot from people. "I've always wanted to write a book, but don't know where to start."
I wrote back to Melinda with a few tips (actually, a lot of tips), and I want to share a few with you here.
If you want to be a writer you have to read a lot and write a lot. That's not from me, but from Stephen King in his memoir, 'On Writing.' I was surprised, and excited, to find a lot of what Stephen King has been doing his whole life, I was doing too. That is, I've been reading a lot, and writing a lot. I did so because since I was 14 years old I've always wanted to be a writer. It's been my passion. It's even my obsession.
My advice to those who want to be a writer is precisely what Stephen King advises in his book. Read a lot and write a lot. For more details I'll let you read his book. It's very good! It's also refreshing and enlightening. I'll also advise you to follow your passion. You'll feel a lot better when you do.
I've heard people don't do what they really want to do because they're afraid of failing. As I mentioned before, I've learned to be humble. This is why I'll be the first to admit I fall in that category. That is, until 2009 when I published my first book, 'The Sandman.'
When my release of my first novel in February 2009 happened I felt like a whole page in my life was finally opened. And this is in part why it was important to get my second book released three years later. 'Who's Minding the Store' will show everyone how serious I am about being a writer. And I've had a lot of help and a lot of support. Thank you for that, too! I want to say thanks before I forget as I continue writing this note.
If you want to be a writer, then write. If you want to learn to fly, then fly! If you want to be a chef, then...I think you get the picture.
Follow your passion. Follow your obsession. You'll be much happier with yourself when you do. And don't worry about failing. So long as you follow your passion and obsession you won't be a failure. That only happens when you never try.
Keep on reading, and I'll keep on writing!