Wednesday, April 17, 2013

The Long Slow Climb

You know, once in a while lightning strikes. Stephen King has often told of how, struggling to survive with a low-paying teaching job as well as part-time jobs, he was writing a book called Carrie, got discouraged with it, and trashed it.

His wife Tabitha fished it out, read it, and insisted that he finish it and submit it. At that point King had had no success at all trying to sell novels, though he was placing short stories in mostly low-paying magazines. This time, lightning struck: he sold the novel in hardcover, had an immediate and lucrative paperback sale, and it soon sold to the movies.

But, alas, Zeus withholds the bolts from most of us. The alternate route is the long, slow climb. You build a wall brick by brick. You build a career book by book. For those of us who like series, this means writing a book in a series, then writing the next, and the next....

First book will sell lousy. Most of the time, anyway. Second book will goose the sales of the first. Third will goose the sales of the first and second. And your career gains momentum.

It's hard, though, to slog through until the scale tips. It would be nice to get some of that juice from Olympus. If it doesn't come, then put another brick in the wall. Sooner or later, you'll be surprised at how momentum begins to build. And in the end, if you're persistent, you will find your audience.

Keep at it. Excelsior!

1 comment:

  1. Well said, Brad. Now, when's that next Dallas book comin'? :)