Thanks for allowing me to visit today, Maryann. I really enjoy your blog and am thrilled to have the opportunity to contribute.
One of the things I’ve learned in the past couple of years is that most of us writers have talents we’ve never tapped into. Sure, we can write. But we tend to stick to the same genres and formats. Novelists don’t often write short stories; poets usually avoid crime fiction; and children’s authors seldom write erotica.
Stretching ourselves, however, helps hone our writing skills and, quite often, adds more money to our bank accounts.
I made this discovery by accident but it does emphasize the fact that writers write. For a number of reasons I won’t bore you with, I found myself not having the time to write fiction from about 1994 to 2004. That doesn’t mean, however, I didn’t write. Without realizing it, I had incorporated my passion for writing into my day job: workflows, forms, training and procedures manuals, magazine articles, a newspaper column, and educational texts.
It was in trade that I first became published and the skills I learned writing magazine articles and technical texts helped my fiction writing tremendously. By necessity, I cut back on needless words and wrote tighter. Deadlines became a fact of life, not something I flirted with or avoided. Being asked to edit and/or revise became commonplace and no longer assaulted my ego.
Because of the money I’m earning at my technical and freelance writing, I’ve been able to sell one insurance business and devote the rest of my professional time to the insurance education business—and the writing and teaching I do for it.
Oh, and did I mention all that freelance writing netted me a contract to write a business book? It’s the first in a series and I had a ball writing it. I’m outlining the next book and it’s even more fun.
The more we writers open ourselves to new experiences and ways to hone our craft, the more successful we become. And, by the way, my personal measure of success is being happy doing what I do. As a writer, being able to spend the majority of my time writing—regardless of the topic or genre—makes me about as happy as I’m ever gonna be!
I highly recommend that writers do serious research into all avenues of pursuing a writing career. It’s amazing how much opportunity is out there.
Linda is a prolific writer who has published fiction, non-fiction, and technical writing in a number of genres and formats. In addition to spending over 30 years in the insurance industry as an education provider, insurance agency owner, insurance consultant, and founder/owner of three insurance businesses, Linda has been writing since childhood.
Her mystery, Second Time Around, was released in January 2009 and was nominated for a 2010 EPIC Award. Her non-fiction book titled, Taking the Mystery Out of Business: 9 Fundamentals for Professional Success was released earlier this month.
As an entrepreneur and the founder of four businesses, Linda Faulkner knows all about what it takes to make it in the world of business. She’s discovered that professional suicide is caused more by a lack of awareness than any other factor, hence her motto: “Clueless is a dangerous place to be.”