I don't know what to do.
I've been thinking, lately, that I might give up on fiction. At least as a serious endeavor.
My questions to me:
Was it naive of me to think it would be something I'd earn a living doing? There are the select few who have "made it," and who were able to write one book after another because they had the financial means to do it. Are they the great exception?
BUT: Are they not people, just like I am a people? Were they not like me, once, before they became exceptions?
If I give up, am I not a quitter?
How am I supposed to give up when I know - I KNOW this - the only way to succeed is to not give up?
If I don't give up and continue to write fiction (which means not working, and therefore not contributing income to my household), am I not then guilty of simply mooching while entertaining my "hobby?"
I am a good writer. It took me years to feel comfortable saying that, but I think I can say it at this point. With that in mind, would I not be wasting an ability if I stopped taking it seriously?
How am I supposed to do anything else if I have, for years, identified myself as a writer? It's simply an essential part of who I am, so how do I stop?
Not everyone can make it. That is a fact. I may be one of those people who doesn't ever publish a book through a major publisher. How do I accept this? I can't seem to accept this.
Is fiction writing really important? Who's reading it, anyway? "They" say fewer people are buying books, now, and more people are publishing them. Are we, the writers, simply engaging, in that case, in creative masturbation? (By "creative" I mean intellectual, not "uses rubber chickens and fern fronds.")
There must be a point at which a person logically determines the odds are against her, yes?
But isn't that sort of the quitter's creed?
A great quote from Nathaniel Hawthorne:
"It is a good lesson--though it may often be a hard one--for a man who has dreamed of literary fame, and of making for himself a rank among the world's dignitaries by such means, to step aside out of the narrow circle in which his claims are recognized, and to find how utterly devoid of significance, beyond that circle, is all that he achieves and all he aims at." --Nathaniel Hawthorne.
I could give up on fiction and write for an organization I believe in, if they're hiring. I could give up on fiction and use all of this energy promoting something that will help people.
But, DAMN, I love writing fiction. And I love that I can touch people with it.
But maybe this is simply one in a long list of things in my life that I've done, and then stopped doing, because I've done it.
Write play, get it produced. Check x 2. (would still love to write plays, but love fiction more)
Write screenplay, get a movie made. Check. (Okay, it was a short little movie, but it screened at the Fargo Film Festival, which was very cool. And I'm currently working on a Homefront adaptation with someone else, my first screenplay collaboration. But I haven't written a full-length screenplay in years, because...well...I loved fiction more.)
Write short stories. Win writing award. Check. (Lost interest in short story writing when I decided I wanted to write a book.)
Write book. Check. (that it's a book that's been well-received helps enormously with my ability to consider this an achieved goal.)
Maybe now that I've written one good book, I can move on. Who says it has to be picked up by a publisher for it to count?
Causes Kristen Tsetsi Supports
Planned Parenthood, SPCA, Big Brothers Big Sisters of America