Today I have a dual post: A to Z Challenge and Insecure Writer's Support Group.
I write historical fiction. In my experience, the writing of historical fiction costs money - I've bought books and have gone on trips. My research involves travel to on-site locations, libraries, and archives. I never really kept track of the expenses or really planned out very far in advance where I would be going and when.
Right now, I am taking a grant writing class, and one of my projects is to get funding for my own research. So far, I've been surprisingly successful at getting a little bit funding (come back on G day for a discussion of grants for individuals). The process of applying for grants has forced me to come up with a detailed plan for each research trip, which puts in my face how much I've been spending on research and how important it is to be efficient about it. Coming up with a plan for my expenses has forced me to come up with a plan for my writing projects too.
I think a business plan for a creative writer doesn't need to be complex and can be as simple as a spreadsheet or table. I would recommend breaking it into years, however you want to define that. For me, I work in school years since I'm in college and have school-aged children. My writing goals and research trips have to fit in with my academic plan.
To accomplish a goal (any goal), you have to complete a series of tasks - for me, the planning process helps me set realistic goals and timeframes for completing them.
More importantly, having a written plan helps me make each task a priority for myself and also empowers me to insist that my family respects the time I need to devote to those tasks. If I have a solid plan, I'm going to get the work done. If you are a mom, you know your default job (even if you have another one) is to take care of everyone else's needs - even the needs they aren't aware of. Without a plan for getting your own work done, it's too easy to get lost in taking care of everyone else.
If you had your own business, you would never do it without a plan. Why should the business of writing be different?
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Do I have insecurities? Absolutely. My main insecurity over the last few months has been over losing the connections here that I worked for so long to develop. I closed this blog because of a certain someone who I never should have shared the link with. I started a new blog, but the effort to start over and reconnect was too time-consuming. If you are considering switching blogs, don't. Seriously.
I joined A to Z this year at the last minute in an effort to reconnect. So far, it's working, and I'm glad I did it.
What are your insecurities? Ever switch blogs or online personas and try to start over?