Writing and publishing requires a writer to make an investment, one that may never see a return, or at least not monetarily. When I started writing, I had no idea how large of an investment I was making. I have spent countless hours at the keyboard and tons of precious energy writing, plotting, and branding myself as an author.
The first book I wrote (Reverie) took me around five years to “complete”. Dissonance has taken me at least two if not three. That’s hours upon hours of ignoring my family, pets, and friends all in the name of creating art. I will assume if I would have told family and friends no more often, it wouldn’t have taken me so long to write those books, but I am a firm believer in living in the present. (At least I try to be) I want to experience life as well as write about it. So I took a lot of “me” time during those eight years.
Now that I am wrapping up the writing and revising phase of Dissonance, money will come into play. I am self-publishing, so that means I have more (or perhaps just different) investments to make than someone who is going the traditional route. They will be querying and waiting for a contract to a publishing house, while I will be seeking out freelance services such as cover artists, proofreaders, editors, etc.
While I might not see a return for a great many months / years, and there’s even a chance I may never make a profit, but I don’t lose my drive or let the monetary aspect get me down. After all, I will never see those combined eight years again either. It’s an investment, the price one might say for doing business.
Though, I consider writing to be an investment into my future. I doubt I will make enough money off of it to quit my day-job (one can hope and dream), but I see the return in my soul. Since I started writing, I have felt a void in my life being filled. I enjoy crafting the plot and developing my characters. Even if no one ever reads my books or I never turn a profit, I will see a return on my investment. I am already seeing it. It is a happier, better me with a hobby that will last through the years.