At the end of September I stepped out of the world of dayjobbery to see what I could do with twelve months of writing full time. You can read previous entries about it here. Nothing last week, as I had guests. Sorry about that!
Well, October has whizzed by. One month down on this freelance thing, and everything is going more or less as expected. The most difficult bit has been nailing myself to my chair when I need to write. It’s easier than ever to get distracted by other things. For the most part though, I’ve managed to get the work done. It’s been a liberating few weeks, and feels entirely right. Any doubts I had that this is what I want to be doing dissipated within days of taking the leap.
So where are we at? I’m closing in on the final chapter of the current novel, which will be released towards the end of January, and with a little luck will be finished the first draft next week. I’m also most of the way done with the second of three novellas that will be released next summer. There are a lot of things on hold so that I can concentrate on these, and some things are going to have to be scrubbed from my wish list of projects altogether because I won’t get to them before various deadlines pass. That’s okay though. The novel and the three novellas are the skeleton of my year – everything else hangs off them, so they have to take priority.
I have to confess though, this is a bit nerve-wracking. Until the end of January, I have no new things happening that will create any income. I’ve money aside, both for minimalist living and to pay for the year’s independent publishing, but it’s weird not knowing when that’s getting topped up or how. This month I’ve seen a couple of hundred quid come in from the three previous novels (mostly Craven Place, which was released a few months ago and is still selling pretty well for a book that isn’t new anymore). That’s only going to diminish though, unless lightning strikes somewhere. Nice to see it, but it won’t get me far.
That’s not a complaint per se, as it’s exactly what I signed myself up for, but it takes some adjusting to. If I could do it over, I would have had something ready to release in October just so something current was happening. As it is, the first three months are more to do with vanishing than being visible – getting things done ready for the start of 2014. Nothing wrong with that, and I love having the time to spend making stories, but it does mean there’s a wait before I can get a sense of whether this year is working out or not.
Ah well. Head down and soldier on. Let’s see what November brings.