IF WRITING WERE LIKE A REGULAR JOB by SHA RENEE

imagesPNPZ0XHK Most of us write because we love creating stories. Even if we’re not likely to earn a living from projects we’ve poured our blood sweat and tears into.  While there are countless authors who have achieved financial success from their writing many of us have accepted the fact that we can’t quit our day jobs – at least not right away.

Like many others, I write because I like to share. You hear a good song or see a good movie, you tell your friends about it. You have dinner at an amazing restaurant, you tell people about it. Your husband rocks your world with some new techniques, and you’re on your phone with your girlfriend the next day. (If it’s really good, you might even pick up your phone and post it on Facebook as soon as he falls asleep). So when we get an amazing story in our heads, we want to share it as well.

My goal as a writer is for people to enjoy my stories. I’ll be honest, though. If one of my stories ends up becoming a huge blockbuster hit, that’d be pretty awesome too.  I could take my mom on a cruise, provide socks for homeless people and open a relaxing coffee cabin on a lake where my author friends and I can get away for a writing retreat. But bottom line, I write because I love it.

Imagine though, if our writing was like a regular nine to five job in an office. The kind where you get up, sit in traffic and clock in. There would be obvious differences, of course. Like the pay: You wouldn’t get a shift differential. The amount of money you earn would not increase if you were sitting at your computer after midnight instead of between the hours of nine and five. And while we’re on the subject – no extra pay if you spend some time on your laptop after the kids open presents on Christmas day. Writing about a risqué or controversial subject? Nope. No hazardous duty pay.  Did you write 2,000 words more than your targeted word count goal? Great! Think you’re getting a bonus for that? Dream on. imaooges (1)

I should point out that there are also similarities between working as a writer and working in a traditional nine to five job. There will be unsatisfied customers. I’m sure I don’t need to elaborate on that particular point.

Office Coffee BreakroomYou can take a break from work at your traditional job, stand around the water cooler or the break room and share the photos from your daughter’s wedding. As a writer, you have your story open on your computer and another tab open on which you’re logged on to Facebook, posting photos of your daughter’s wedding. In a traditional job, if you run into a problem, you can contact your IT guy/girl or call the helpdesk. In the writing world, we have something even better: Let me explain. In my story, my female character is getting dressed for a date and trying to decide what type of underwear to wear (if any). I posted a question on Scribophile and in almost no time, I had several people telling me their experiences with thongs, which ones are more comfortable, etc., complete with links to photos.

Finally, there are times when an employer begins using an updated software program, or implements new procedures for performing tasks. In the writing world we sometimes get new words, new uses for old words or acceptable ways to use words which previously weren’t.

I FOUND THIS ON DICTIONARY.COM:

Like leaked as the past tense of leak, sneaked was the original past tense and past participle for sneak, which means “to move in a stealthy or furtive manner.” Used as early as the late 1800s, snuck has become the standard variant past tense and past participle of the verb sneak. Though some grammarians, particularly in Britain, still prefer sneaked, snuck has achieved widespread acceptance and usage in edited writing, including fiction and journalism.

The article explains that colloquial usage slowly standardizes rendering the word shrunk for example as the preferred past tense of the verb shrink overtaking the original, shrank.

Alright, back to work.

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