Re-entering the World of Writing: One Writer's Story

Imagine awakening to find 30 years have gone by!
Imagine awakening to find 30 years have gone by! | Source

Pink Floyd's "Time"

Imagine going to bed and waking up the next morning to find your self thrust into time 30 years ahead. Ridiculous you say? You’ve watched too many time travel movies, Bravewarrior, you say? Nope, in fact I’ve only seen “Back to the Future” and that entailed time travel in reverse. Sometimes I wish I could peel back the sands of time, but that is wasted thinking.

The truth is, one night I went to sleep as a paid copywriter who freelanced on the side, and the next morning I awakened to the world of cost accounting, several hundred miles from home. Don’t get me wrong; I never stopped writing. I simply was no longer paid for my words. Oh sure, I continued to write poetry – even had 4 poems chosen for inclusion in anthologies over the years. Cost accounting afforded me a reliable schedule and was more conducive to raising a family. As it turns out, it was a wise decision on my part because I found myself as a single mom for most of my son’s life.

In 2011 the construction company I worked for decided to become LEED certified. In so doing, we formed what I deemed “The Green Team”. We were a committee of several employees who shared ideas on going green within the office. This really ramped me up. I had tons of ideas and was an active participant in the meetings. Knowing I had been a writer in my younger years, the Vice President challenged me to write Green Tips, a new series to be posted on the company’s website. I was the sole contributor and began stewing up ideas each Thursday; I was very excited and proud of my new post. My Saturdays were spent putting those ideas onto paper which were then posted each Monday to the website.

My creative embers were now sparked and I was on fire. I wanted to do more than post Green Tips for the company website (for which I was not compensated); I wanted to be a writer – again. I joined HubPages in October 2011. I found a wonderfully supportive community, found my writers voice (which differs from my copywriter’s voice) and was once again passionate about my creative self. Eleven months later I quit my job to write full time. It was a huge risk, but I just couldn’t stand the corporate environment any longer. I had to get out and begin striving towards my dream. I was 55 at the time and knew I had to go for it or the window might close on me, never to be opened again.

I will now share with you what life has been like for this writer from then until now.

I was living my dream
I was living my dream | Source

In the beginning

When I was a copywriter in the early to mid 1980s I was salaried at $300/week plus 5 percent commission on any airtime I sold. As copywriter, I spent a lot of time with our clients. I gained a rapport with them and the reps at the local network affiliate stations. As the result, when a client wanted to buy more airtime, they would do it through me. It seems our sales reps were of the ‘love them and leave them’ mentality. Once they had their commission checks in hand, they never bothered to build a relationship with our clients. That turned out to be good for me and our clients. We had repeat customers as the result and I was making damn good money. In addition, I freelanced for the editing company we used to the tune of $50/hour. As a young, vibrant single girl in the ‘80’s I was high on the hog.

Working for a content mill makes you feel like part of the herd just waiting to be milked of all you've got for a few strands of hay.
Working for a content mill makes you feel like part of the herd just waiting to be milked of all you've got for a few strands of hay. | Source

Rude awakening

Flash forward to 2011.

I posted my profile on Freelancer.com. I hadn’t yet bid on any jobs, but was contacted by a freelance writer out of Jacksonville who thought I’d be a good fit for her team. I was elated. Wow, this is going well. I’m being sought and I’ve only just begun!

Then the bomb dropped. I was assigned 15 articles at 500 words each for – get this - $1 per article. WTF! It was a good thing I still had my day job at this point! I took the gig just so I could have some current experience under my belt. You see, back in the ‘80s there was no SEO, keyword density or online writing. I had a whole new world to master if I expected to live my dream, so I had to eat crow. Let me tell you, crow tastes nothing like chicken!

Soon after that, a few more clients hired me. Now I was making $2 and $3/500 words. Hey, I was on a roll! (Can you hear the sarcasm?) Nevertheless, I was gaining experience and had plenty of work. By this time I really hated my day job and sat down one weekend to do the math. I figured out how many articles I would have to write in a week to meet my monthly overhead. Forget about trying to match my accounting salary – that was over $900/week. Anyway, I tendered my resignation knowing I’d have my 401k to help me out until I could start making real money.

All was going well, but I was hungry for more and the peanuts I was being paid for my work really started to piss me off. One day, billybuc sent me a lead for a content mill that was paying $11/300 words and offered weekly bonuses of $50. I applied and was accepted. I was averaging $325/week, which equated to about 80 percent of my overhead. At least I wasn’t dipping so far into savings at this point.

Then the site went down for 2 weeks for re-organization. Oh, shit. That meant 2 weeks with no income. When they came back up they’d changed the rules. They no longer offered the bonus program plus the word count went up and the pay per article went down. Crap!

I’d lost my momentum in those 2 weeks and decided I would no longer lower myself to the slap-in-the-face-pay the mills offer.

It was time to come up with a new game plan.

Join me on my blog

Bravewarrior's Feathered Pen

This site is all about Life. Animal life, human life, the part Mother Nature plays and everything in between. Life is good! Life is a learning process leading us along the path to our individual purposes on this Earth. Join me in celebrating the gift of Life. With a niche as vast as Life, there is always something to talk about, to share - and yes, a gripe or two may be thrown in here and there.

I hope the ramblings you find here inspire you to come back often and share with me. I'm looking forward to providing a place where we can become friends and share in the beauty Life has to offer.

You want me to build a what?

I started surfing looking for freelance jobs and discovered many helpful blogs dedicated to the art of writing. Every blasted one of them strongly recommended you build a writers site in order to get good paying clients to notice you. Many writers starting out (or starting over, as in my case) can’t afford to pay a webmaster. Oh, but good news! Several hosts allow you to build your own for free!

Great, just great! I am far from tech savvy. I know how to type, use the number keypad and hit the backspace or undo button, but build a friggin’ website? Are you kidding me?

I knew I had to tackle the unknown if I expected to move forward in my career. At the same time, several of my cyber friends were breaking away from HP and building their own websites. We emailed each other back and forth (we’re still tight) and discovered a free web host called Weebly.com. My friends dove right in but I lingered behind, insecure in my ability to play the IT role.

I put it off until sometime in August of 2013. By this time I hadn’t had a paying gig since the end of April and I was starting to panic. Then I did what I’ve done all my life: I pulled myself up by the bootstraps, went into Weebly and started creating my website. I spent a solid week working on it and still find myself making tweaks to the site 2 months later. But I did it and I’m proud.

Building an online presence

After I built my site, I delved heavily into researching how to bring traffic to my site, gain subscribers to my blog, etc. I’ve built profiles on LinkedIn, Google+ and Twitter. I’ve completed the Google Authorship process and am an Amazon Affiliate. I attend webinars weekly, have downloaded free e-books on becoming a successful freelancer, posted a listing on Yelp.com and Superpages.com, had business cards made up and even ordered magnets for my car. I’m an active commenter on the blogs I follow. I’m doing everything I’ve been advised to do. I’ve even signed up for a really awesome ‘by invitation only’ site that offers guidance, job leads, critiques of your work and website, community forums, free e-courses and boot camps, etc., in order to try to get myself working again.

Now I’ve hit another area in which I’m very insecure and that’s marketing. I’ve never had to market myself before. My work spoke for itself. But those were simpler times and now is now. We’re no longer simply writers. We also have to market ourselves and do what advertising agencies have entire departments for to handle the needs of their writing staff. I have to face up to that and once again do something I don’t want to do if I expect to survive in this business. (Jeez, you’d think my bootstraps would be worn out by now!)

Are you pecking away at your dream?
Are you pecking away at your dream? | Source
Take time to chill out
Take time to chill out | Source

Don't spin around in circles

Words of advice

Sometimes you can be a little too educated. At my last accounting job we used to whisper amongst us that the (newly appointed) President was under-socialized and over- educated. Sometimes too much learning can turn around and bite you in the ass.

I’ve spent so much time learning in the past few months that I’ve had little time for writing. The blogs I subscribe to email me daily. There’s something to be learned in each one. I get daily notifications from HP that my favorite authors have published something new. I have 2 webinars scheduled for each Thursday. It’s gotten to where I feel like there’s not enough time in the day to do all I need to do in order to move forward. Too often lately, I feel like I’m spinning in circles and can’t find the way out.

So, here’s what I’ve decided: There are only so many hours in the day. I find myself getting burned out and more confused than enlightened. I have to gauge my time and give a little piece of me to each area that needs attention rather than spend all my time trying to keep up with emails and classes.

I’ll see if this will work for me:

  • Spend an hour or so scanning email to see what should be addressed now.
  • Write every day, even if only a few hundred words. Word comes with a handy-dandy ‘save’ button that allows me to return at my leisure.
  • Spend a couple of hours a day working on marketing. I have a flyer I want to design to mail out/hand out. Do it! Look up local businesses and contact them letting them know I’m available to help them with their writing needs.
  • Spend an hour or so in the Freelance Writers Den. After all, I’m paying for it.
  • Spend an hour or so daily coming up with article ideas for my blog, HP submissions and ideas to pitch to magazines.
  • This is a biggie – learn how to write a query letter and start querying!
  • Save time for myself doing what I loved to do before I became consumed with writing.

I need to organize my time and tackle the areas that scare the pants off me. I refuse to let my dream die. Even more so, I refuse to be the cause of death!

The bottom line is this: if you're serious about pursuing your dreams, do it. It won't be easy, but then nothing worth having is. Push yourself. Get pissed at yourself when you find you are the reason you're not moving forward. Life and dreams are full of obstacles. Don't let the obstacles be you! Overcome. Dream. Strive. Achieve.

Thanks for letting me share my experiences with you. Putting it down on paper has helped me gain perspective. I hope you’ve gotten something out of it, too.

Peace,

Bravewarrior


P.S. What are your experiences in launching your career? Have you become discouraged? How have you overcome your fears? I'd love to hear your story. Feel free to share in the comments section below.



Shauna L Bowling

Refining, Defining or Rhyming

All Rights Reserved


© 2013 Shauna L Bowling

More by this Author


Comments 69 comments

billybuc profile image

billybuc 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

Even before I saw the title of this article I knew what it was about. :)

You don't need me to tell you my story; it's your story you need to concentrate on.

I'm here if you need me.

love,

bill


bravewarrior profile image

bravewarrior 3 years ago from Central Florida Author

I know you are, Bill. Our recent communication is what led me to write this hub. I don't know what I'd do without your support and true friendship. Just talking to you helps. I love you lots!


DJ Anderson 3 years ago

Wow! You've got it going on.

Writing out a schedule is always helpful for daily structure.

Sha, you have had a fast track life. Much of it does not sound like fun.

However, it sounds like you have a true compass reading and are on your way.

My hat is off to you for facing fears and setting goals.

YOU GO GIRL!!

Love,

DJ.


bravewarrior profile image

bravewarrior 3 years ago from Central Florida Author

Keep telling me, DJ. I need a voice in my head other than my own to keep me forging ahead!


DJ Anderson 3 years ago

Look how far you have come, Sha. You have brains and gut and talent.

Walk like you own it! The work is done. You just have to keep that motion going.

You must also remember to feed your kitties and take a breather to clear your head.

Hey, you need a cheerleader, I'm your girl.

DJ.

PS. I have very important duties--must go walk the dog.


bravewarrior profile image

bravewarrior 3 years ago from Central Florida Author

DJ, my kitties are never neglected. I can't say the same for myself, however. :-(


marcoujor profile image

marcoujor 3 years ago from Jeffersonville PA

Dear Sha,

I feel the same as Bill only I am not nearly as together as he is...I so greatly admire your determination, your dreams and your struggle to maintain a healthy life balance.

I have a positive feeling about you, truly I do. Love, Maria


tsmog profile image

tsmog 3 years ago from Escondido, CA

Thank You for sharing a window toward a dream of dreams . . .

tim


bravewarrior profile image

bravewarrior 3 years ago from Central Florida Author

Thank you for reading, Tim!


bravewarrior profile image

bravewarrior 3 years ago from Central Florida Author

Maria, I'm going to hang onto your words. Your encouragement is exactly what I need!


FlourishAnyway profile image

FlourishAnyway 3 years ago from USA

Keep striving, pushing forward, believing in yourself. It's terrific that you took such a giant leap. If you don't promote yourself and believe in the magic of what you do, how will others? Keep going!


bravewarrior profile image

bravewarrior 3 years ago from Central Florida Author

Flourish, that is the next hurdle for me to overcome - promotion. Thanx for believing in me and giving me a nudge in the right direction.


ocfireflies profile image

ocfireflies 3 years ago from North Carolina

Excellent insight from an excellent writer filled with inspiration, creatively and honestly presented...Thank You for sharing your story!

Kim


bravewarrior profile image

bravewarrior 3 years ago from Central Florida Author

Kim, I think it was something I needed to do in order to kick my butt in gear and organize my thoughts. It helped to put it down in black and white. I felt it would be a good topic for a hub in case anyone else is going thru the trials and tribs as I am. Thanx for stopping by!


DJ Anderson 3 years ago

So, you got that list made, yet?

Did you get some organization completed?

I'm just checking up on you.

Got to run. Chicken pot pie is done.

Love ya,

DJ.


Anna Haven profile image

Anna Haven 3 years ago from Scotland

Hi Bravewarrior

I loved to read about your journey. You have already crossed the line to a new life and you have the grit and determination to hang in there till it flourishs.

I admire your honesty, integrity and off course your writing. Just look at how much everyone else believes in you, keep that feeling held inside and then market yourself.

I lived in a corporate world, I live in a 'not a spare minute' world and I hope to end up in a contended novel writer world.

I believe in us both completely and also that our dreams will transpire.

You feel and breath life into your very words. It is just a matter of time :)


bravewarrior profile image

bravewarrior 3 years ago from Central Florida Author

I'm working on it, DJ. Jeez, you're pushy! Just kidding. I really appreciate your support and friendship. You've become very dear to me.

Chicken pot pie? Homemade?


bravewarrior profile image

bravewarrior 3 years ago from Central Florida Author

Anna, your message to me is one I will keep in my head. You inspire me to keep forging ahead. Yep, marketing is next on the to-do list, whether I like it or not. One thing I did accomplish this year is publishing my first poetry book. I was pretty excited about that.

I believe in your dream. You just have to make it happen. It may take getting out of the corporate world in order to clear your head and redirect your efforts. If you can afford it, I'd think seriously about it.


Anna Haven profile image

Anna Haven 3 years ago from Scotland

What name did you publish your book under? I will have a look for it.

I am in a busy world of balancing kids and work just now so my paranormal tales with have to wait a little while, till they weave their path. I can wait though.

I am behind you all the way Bravewarrior. I believe :)


bravewarrior profile image

bravewarrior 3 years ago from Central Florida Author

Anna, it's called "Hearts and Rainbows - A Poetic Look at Life", written under my real name Shauna L Bowling. It's available on Lulu.com, Amazon.com and Barnesandnoble.com. You can search for it using my name. It's only available in soft back - no e-book.


Anna Haven profile image

Anna Haven 3 years ago from Scotland

I will have a look :)


DJ Anderson 3 years ago

Chicken pot pie. Home made??

Yeah, me and Mrs. Marie Calendar worked on it for about 48 minutes!!

My Mother started teaching me to cook when I was around 10 years old. She was an amazing cook and she dearly loved to cook for others.

I, too, used to love to cook, but I overcame that dreaded illness when

the last child was out of the nest.

About 8 years ago we found the convenience of,

( Heavenly Choir ) COSTCO. Now days, we consider a homemade meal,

hot dogs on the grill, and opening a can of Bush beans. Hmm, Hmmm,

"Roll that beautiful bean footage."

Alright Ms. Sha, get your day going and stop reading these silly messages that crazy people (me) write to you.

Hope I made you laugh.

Love,

DJ.


MarleneB profile image

MarleneB 3 years ago from Northern California, USA

It seems like we have a common encourager - billybuc - he has been instrumental in me pulling up my bootstraps as well. It's all like you said. There's nothing to it but to do it! Congratulations, in advance, for your success!


bravewarrior profile image

bravewarrior 3 years ago from Central Florida Author

I like that, Marlene - "there's nothing to it but to do it"! Billybuc's the best. He's not only become my mentor but I friend I will hold dear for the rest of my life.


Nell Rose profile image

Nell Rose 3 years ago from England

Wow! you have certainly put the work in! as you said that is the problem with writing for any sort of site, one day its fine, the money comes in and then bump, down it goes and we have to pick ourselves back up again, you are certainly an inspiration! voted up and shared! nell


CrisSp profile image

CrisSp 3 years ago from Sky Is The Limit Adventure

"Don't let the obstacles be you! Overcome. Dream. Strive. Achieve." ~ absolutely posting these words on my board!

Been there Sha and I can very much relate to your story. I am happy where I am now after walking out of my once glamorous and high-paying job. I may not be earning what I used to earn but I am a free-bird not jaded as before. I finally have found what I love doing: Flying and writing.

You have such admirable trait --bravewarrior indeed, suits you best! Thank you for the most inspirational read.

Sharing your story, so others may get inspired!


bravewarrior profile image

bravewarrior 3 years ago from Central Florida Author

Nell, it's time to get real clients and say to hell with the writing sites. I just designed a flyer to mail out to local businesses in my area. Next is getting a mailing list together, then sending them out. Hopefully I'll get a nibble or two out of my efforts.


Eiddwen profile image

Eiddwen 3 years ago from Wales

Brilliant Shauna and voted up for sure. I know many writers will find this hub so useful. Enjoy your weekend my friend.

Eddy.


bravewarrior profile image

bravewarrior 3 years ago from Central Florida Author

Cris, I'm so glad you found your place in this world. Corporate America certainly isn't for me anymore. I love being my own boss.

Thank you for sharing and being inspired by my story. Enjoy your weekend!


bravewarrior profile image

bravewarrior 3 years ago from Central Florida Author

DJ, you did make me laugh. I love Marie Calender's pot pies! I don't cook much anymore either. My son's usually at work and I just don't go through the effort for just me. I'm sure that has everything to do with my weight gain this past year. :-(


bravewarrior profile image

bravewarrior 3 years ago from Central Florida Author

Glad you found this useful, Eddy. How's your card business going?


Astra Nomik profile image

Astra Nomik 3 years ago from Edge of Reality and Known Space

Hi Shauna, this is a great hub. You have a lot of experience in writing. You sound like your writing life has been quite an adventure. I have been on Hub pages for three years and posted mostly poetry. Poetry does not earn me much here. But I like you, have a Weebly blog, and there I earn handsomely from many more ways to earn - which a blog and owned domain allows a person like us. I also write freelance and guest blog some times.

I work in publishing and yes, it has gone through some big changes. Publishers face stiff competition from the web. Embracing the web is the way to go. That is where all the future readers are to be found.

The key top being successful is to discover what is popular and write about it, or else write within what is a well liked niche, because that will do well for you. I checked your blog out and it is wonderful. I wish you good fortune in your travels.

Are you in LinkekdIn? I have found several writing gigs there. I avoid eLance and Odesk. They pay rubbish. LinkedIn has people always looking for work from writers. The trick is to grab the work fast as there is lots of competition there.


bravewarrior profile image

bravewarrior 3 years ago from Central Florida Author

Astra (love your pen name!) I am on LinkedIn. Where do I go to find writing gigs? I subscribe to a few of the writers news forums, but haven't found the jobs posting area. Can you steer me in the right direction?


Suzie HQ profile image

Suzie HQ 3 years ago from Dublin, Ireland

Hi Shauna,

What a beautifully penned piece this is. I have had to take a little time for me after just completing 15 hubs per month consistently for a year. I have learnt SO MUCH from friends like you and Bill and will be writing more here starting in the next day just had to chill, think and regroup, re-focus and organize myself better. It was all new to me writing as a career and I get very emotional at times thinking how far I have come and how far I have to go but the spirit is there to work at it, like you do. Congrats my dear friend for all you have achieved, you are a real role model.


bravewarrior profile image

bravewarrior 3 years ago from Central Florida Author

Suzie, I've been thinking about you lately. I was wondering why we haven't seen you. I completely understand. Sometimes we just need to take a step back and chill for a while, otherwise we're liable to burn out. Burn out sucks. I'm glad you took time for yourself. See you soon!


grandmapearl profile image

grandmapearl 3 years ago from Southern Tier New York State

Shauna, my friend, you absolutely never cease to amaze me! Your drive and gutsy, positive outlook will get you where you need to go--of that I have no doubt.

In reading your blog and your articles, I know for certain you have goals you will reach and roadblocks you will launch over with ease. Your wisdom and talents along with your true grit are your best friends.

I have often felt overwhelmed by all the emails that I need to read that tell me the best marketing and seo techniques; all the blogs and the hubs that I want to read from my favorite authors; all the ideas I have floating around that need to be put down on paper, etc., etc.

Somehow you find a way to figure it all out. I really like your idea of scheduling and sorting out your priorities--that sounds like a winning plan to me.

Best of luck in everything that you do, my friend ;) Pearl


bravewarrior profile image

bravewarrior 3 years ago from Central Florida Author

Pearl, I know you've just posted a hub and I will read it but not until tomorrow. I need to make dinner. I gave myself the day off from the computer and sat out back reading all afternoon.

My yard was a-flutter with red-headed woodpeckers all afternoon. I now know their 'call'. It was funny, but as I was watching one huge guy peck away at a tree on the perimeter of my yard, I noticed a squirrel just below him picking up his tree droppings. The cycle of life was right in front of me!

Back to your comment - I really appreciate all you say. I have a folder called 'ideas'. When something strikes me, I write it down and throw it in that folder. To be honest, I haven't consulted it because of all the emails I've been reading about marketing, etc. Sometimes you can gain too much knowledge and it kicks you in the ass. I fear I've run out of ideas because I'm not exercising that part of my brain. I'm sure once I consult my folder I'll have more than a few 'Aha!' moments.

I'm glad I'm not the only one inundated with learning! :-)

Love,

Shauna


Astra Nomik profile image

Astra Nomik 3 years ago from Edge of Reality and Known Space

Wow, you are on LinkedIn already? Feel free to link up to my profile. I am in a number of groups and I seem to find work there pretty easily. People and businesses post jobs for writers there all the time. Just join as many groups to do with freelance writing and writing as possible. Make sure the Groups are related or connected to the genre you write in, or your inbox will fill up with useless updates every day.


bravewarrior profile image

bravewarrior 3 years ago from Central Florida Author

Thanx, Astra, I'll look you up. I have joined a couple of groups that deal with freelance writing, but I haven't found work yet. I'll have to dig deeper. Thanx for the advice! Are you known as Astra Nomik on LinkedIn?


ElizaDoole profile image

ElizaDoole 3 years ago from London

I really enjoyed reading this. Your experiences are very close to the bone. The way you have to learn so much in order to be a successful on-line writer really chimed with my experiences too. I've just arrived at the design a website stage - I'm laughing along with your comments about not being "tech savvy"!


bravewarrior profile image

bravewarrior 3 years ago from Central Florida Author

Good luck with your design, Eliza. I was frustrated at first, but the more I delved into it, the easier it got. I am no tech, but today's writers have to be if we want to survive.


Astra Nomik profile image

Astra Nomik 3 years ago from Edge of Reality and Known Space

Oops, no. I go by my own name Cathy Nerujen. It makes more sense to use one's own name, it eliminates confusion.

This is just a small suggestion. You could offer to do trial one-off writing jobs for clients just to show what you can do. I know that sounds tough for someone who has achieved as much as you have in writing. Do whatever it takes to get on the freelance writing ladder.

I am very active in LinkedIn. Always be around other writers. I make it a motto in my life.


bravewarrior profile image

bravewarrior 3 years ago from Central Florida Author

Thanx, Astra. I'll look you up. I just designed a flyer that I need to have printed up and distributed. I'm offering a 10% discount on the first project when the flyer is mentioned. We'll see how that works.


CraftytotheCore profile image

CraftytotheCore 3 years ago

I can't believe I missed this when you published it. I've been around very little the last few days. My life has suddenly gone from stop to overdrive again. Wonderful words of inspiration Sha!

I too was in a lucrative career for 12 years before staying home with my children. It's a tough world out there going from not having to worry about money at all to wondering what job will come my way so I can contribute to the bills.

When I started my home business, I was working for a nursing home doing scrapbook pages and creating bulletin board themes. It was really fun. But then my son was diagnosed with Autism. Life stopped. It was all about him from there, and then I got sick. Oh boy, I could go on and on, but I know you understand.

So, after my last surgery in the spring this year, I was reading ways to blog for money. Once long ago, I blogged with short articles, not like HP. Things changed a lot since then. Anyway, I read all these articles on how to monetize a blog. I still have no clue what all the techy stuff means. It's much different than I'm used to. Anyway, here I am.

I'm glad to know people like you and Billybuc though. Thanks friends.


bravewarrior profile image

bravewarrior 3 years ago from Central Florida Author

Crafty, change in career is always tough. I'm still struggling, but I'll make it and so will you!


fpherj48 profile image

fpherj48 3 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York

Sha.....You're a Rock Star, Babe! This hub is exciting and inspiring.....I am 100% positive you have influenced many.

My comments are simple. I am duly impressed with your incredible tenacity and drive. As a fellow-writer, I'm damned proud of you, girl. You have thrown all of yourself into your dream......Of course you will make it! This is truly spirit-lifting.....Success is YOURS. UP+++ shared, tweeted and pinned.


bravewarrior profile image

bravewarrior 3 years ago from Central Florida Author

Ah, Paula you just made my day! I certainly hope I will one day make you (and me) proud. It's a struggle, but so was learning to walk, right? Thanx for sharing - every little pin and tweet helps!


epbooks profile image

epbooks 3 years ago from Las Vegas, NV

What a fantastic hub. I've been working at a day job and writing on my days off. For the past three years, all I wrote was books (eleven of them) and didn't delve into the online writing, except for my own blog, Facebook and Twitter. This year, things changed. I still write my books, but I also write here, on my blog and on bubblews. It is a LOT of work but hopefully it will pay off one day. Thanks for this inspiring hub.


bravewarrior profile image

bravewarrior 3 years ago from Central Florida Author

Liz, you sure are a busy lady! I have a blog and write here, but neither will ever pay the bills. That's why I need to find paying clients until I can afford the luxury of writing what I dream of writing and that's short stories and hopefully a novel if I can swing it before I get too old to see! LOL


Happyboomernurse profile image

Happyboomernurse 3 years ago from South Carolina

Dear Shauna,

As you know, I just became a follower of your Brave Warrior's Feathered Pen and am looking forward to reading your posts.

This hub was an honest, authentic and inspiring article about your writing journey and you've managed to show the good, the bad and the ugly sides of the way the world of writing has changed during the past 30 years.

In many ways, it's easier to get published than ever, but in terms of earning good compensation and having marketing support it's much harder, as your personal story illustrates.

Also, there is much to learn in the field of technology and I admire the way you've emerged yourself in learning by seminars, plus gathering a group of supporters around you.

Your passion and writing talent is palpable, your skills are being sharpened on a daily basis and I can't help but think you will succeed in making your dream of earning a living through your writing come true.

I am voting this hub up across the board.

Hugs,

Gail


bravewarrior profile image

bravewarrior 3 years ago from Central Florida Author

Gail, I hope you're right. It is definitely a struggle in today's market. As I told my brother, I can't be a Stephen King until I spend a lot of time writing what I'd rather not write. I can't depend on fiction to pay the bills, so I have to write for other people until I have the luxury of writing for myself.


tillsontitan profile image

tillsontitan 3 years ago from New York

After reading your hub and the comments I feel like I'm out of the writing loop. However, like so many others I have excuses ;)

Due to family illnesses I have been taken away from my writing and reading. I try to get back as much as possible but I know it's not enough.

I admire your tenacity that's not to mention your talent. You will make it, I know you will as you are well on your way.

Thanks for the information and perhaps unbeknownst to you, the pep talk.

Voted up, useful, awesome, and interesting.


bravewarrior profile image

bravewarrior 3 years ago from Central Florida Author

Mary, we all have to follow our own paths and set priorities. Family comes first. Please don't feel guilty. We'll be here when you're ready.

You're welcome for the pep talk. This hub was my way of giving myself a pep talk!


DeborahNeyens profile image

DeborahNeyens 2 years ago from Iowa

I loved reading your story and how it contains so many nuggets of good advice. I also need to spend more time on marketing and do more querying!


bravewarrior profile image

bravewarrior 2 years ago from Central Florida Author

Deb, I hate marketing, but without it, I'm dead in the water!


Nadine May profile image

Nadine May 2 years ago from Cape Town, Western Cape, South Africa

I so enjoyed reading your story. The name bravewarrior suits you. Time is really an issue for me. To many things to do in one day, but I will followed your schedule. Many thanks.


bravewarrior profile image

bravewarrior 2 years ago from Central Florida Author

Nadine, time can certainly be the enemy. I still don't have a good handle on it. I'm working on it, tho!


VVanNess profile image

VVanNess 2 years ago from Prescott Valley

I love this! Great job being courageous enough to jump back into what you love! Everyone wondered why I was writing for such little money, but I can see into the future.

I know that the effort I put into today will eventually pay off in the future. Keep fighting the good fight! Kudos on the great article!


bravewarrior profile image

bravewarrior 2 years ago from Central Florida Author

Thanx, Victoria. It's a hard road to travel after so many years. As the song goes, "times they are a-changin'"!


Crystal Tatum profile image

Crystal Tatum 2 years ago from Georgia

I enjoyed reading your story and congratulate you on your courage and commitment to writing. Good writers are not valued as they once were, and the $1 per 500-word article example you gave proves that. I think we are all better refusing those kinds of offers.


bravewarrior profile image

bravewarrior 2 years ago from Central Florida Author

Crystal, refusing those assignments and even those that pay $10/500 have meant my income level is below poverty level, but I refuse to settle for less than I'm worth. I'm working on the marketing end. I just got real ballsy and sent an email to Julian Lennon suggesting we could be good partners in fixing the world. He has a foundation called White Feather Foundation, where he's working to bring clean water to deprived areas and so much more. I've also asked him to put music to my poem "Listen to Me, For the Earth I Plea" (posted on HP) in exchange for my turning over 75% of what I would make to his foundation.

Hey, gotta start somewhere, right? Why not start where you might be heard? My newly found niche is environmental awareness. I have a voice. I need to partner with someone who has the presence. It's worth a shot. I'll never know if I don't try.


Jo_Goldsmith11 profile image

Jo_Goldsmith11 2 years ago

What a great write up! I am like you in learning how to gauge my time more wisely. As well as taking the plunge toward being more marketable. Thanks to billybuc! :-) I have learned how to write a more effective inquiry letter to get local magazines interested in my writing and the projects I come up with. Awesome as always!

Voted up across the board and shared.

Blessings & hugs! (((((((((((( Bravewarrior))))))))))


bravewarrior profile image

bravewarrior 2 years ago from Central Florida Author

Billybuc is certainly an awesome teacher and supporter, Jo. You can't go wrong with him as a mentor!


RachaelOhalloran profile image

RachaelOhalloran 2 years ago from United States

You are truly a brave warrior. I can honestly say I would never have been able to just give up my job and go freelance. I need the safety net because I support two other people in my house but oh, how I wish I could do it! I'm semi retired now, I have to work until I'm 71 - not quite 4 years more to get full social security. My little writings are what I call busy work just to keep the cob webs from setting in. But you, my friend, you have it all going on! Your website is beautiful and I enjoy reading your articles. I'm so proud of you and glad you are my friend.

Rachael


bravewarrior profile image

bravewarrior 2 years ago from Central Florida Author

Rachael, I just couldn't take another day at my last job. The atmosphere had become tense, lies were told, policy changes were made without notifying employees, and it was just plain depressing. I took a huge leap, I know. I lived off my 401k for the first year. Now I have no retirement nest egg to rely on. I did what I felt I had to do.


RachaelOhalloran profile image

RachaelOhalloran 2 years ago from United States

I know you did. I can see that in your writings. Oh, btw, I wasn't passing judgment, I was praising you for being able to have the courage to take that leap.

Many people know they have to do it, in order to move forward, but not many have the courage to "just do it!" And you did. Your retirement fund was extra to your built up Social Security. You needed it to live on, so that is spilt milk at this point. You'll still get Social Security when you retire and who knows? Maybe by then you'll have another nestegg built up. You have lots of good working years ahead of you and from what I've read, good prospects and some jobs in the offing to support yourself, so you are going to be just fine, brave one.


bravewarrior profile image

bravewarrior 2 years ago from Central Florida Author

Rachael, I know you weren't passing judgement. I apologize if my comment came off that way. Yeah, I "just did it". I figured if not now, when? BTW, I'm behind in reading your hubs. I think I have two I need to catch up with. I'll get there - promise!


JennC 20 months ago

Shauna, this was a very inspiring article. Thank you so much for sharing it.


bravewarrior profile image

bravewarrior 20 months ago from Central Florida Author

You're welcome, Jenn. Thank you for reading.

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