My recent writing life’s been a bit of a rollercoaster. Not an exciting one, with the screams of exhilaration and the wind rushing through my hair, but at least one that’s now hitting a high point.
This weekend was a huge low. I’d been plugging away trying to get freelance work without much luck. I’d had several short story rejections, including some I’d been quietly optimistic about. I sat down with Mrs K to look at our finances and realised that very soon I was going to have to head back to an office.
I was not a happy bunny. But this had an upside. The risk of losing the lifestyle I’ve started to build made me realise how much I appreciate it, what lengths I’m willing to go to to protect it.
And that’s why I found myself awake at midnight on Sunday, desperately typing away at applications for freelance writing work, because it was that or apply for a post as a school secretary.
And somewhere in amongst all that panic and selling myself, some good news arrived. A story shortlisted for a paying market.
I got up on Monday, started plugging away again through a haze of sleep deprivation and caffeine. I almost thought I imagined the moment when an email said I’d be paid for a piece of blog work I’d given up on the previous week. By lunchtime one of that day’s applications had paid off – an employer had already come back offering me article writing work. I knuckled down to it.
And today more of the same. Another freelance application come good. A flash story short-listed at one of the best paying markets in science fiction and fantasy. I am on a role!
Seriously, I have not felt this upbeat in months. I celebrated by running round the house in my underpants, singing a song about how I was running round in my underpants. It’s the new rock’n’roll.
So if you’re getting disheartened, don’t give up. Stick with it. You can do it.
And now to work. I suddenly have lots to do.
In my underpants.