by Kristine Coblitz
I find it entertaining how the uninitiated (non-writers) perceive the life of a working writer.
A few weeks ago, I had a woman come up to me (name withheld to protect the innocent) and tell me we needed to write a fiction book together because she needed to make a lot of money really fast. I smiled and managed to keep a straight face, coming really close to telling her that she had a better chance of winning the lottery. She followed up by telling me that a better idea would be for her to tell me her story so I can write it because I’m a good typist.
A few months ago, I had another woman e-mail me because a friend wanted to change careers and become a freelance technical writer. No problem there, except that the woman expected me to provide a quick fix solution to changing careers overnight. I’m willing to help anyone, but I’m not a miracle worker.
These women were under the misconception that I knew the secret to financial freedom and happiness within the writing life. Believe me, I wish I did. You can bet I’d be telling my story on Oprah and sipping fruity drinks in Bermuda.
But we all know that’s not the case. I’m not going to Bermuda any time soon. My glamorous life is spent in my pajamas most days and counting my pennies to make it between paychecks, thanking my lucky stars that I have a husband who can support most of our monthly expenses. But that doesn’t mean we haven’t had to make some sacrifices.
Trust me, I’m not complaining. Changing careers and taking the subsequent pay cut was the best decision I ever made, but it’s not as glamorous as everyone thinks.
Tell me your favorite stories from the uninitiated. What are the common misconceptions about your profession?