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Full Time Writing

Updated on April 20, 2014

Full Time Writer

You have a dream. You consider your writing to be up to standard, you’ve perhaps received your first acceptance, and you fantasize about writing full time.

Wait a moment. Consider the options before going further!

Writing is uncertain. A lot of flourishing authors prefer to be part time writers, and treat writing as a lucrative pastime.

Sometimes, writing can be rewarding, but more often it pays very little. Consider the hourly rate. Weigh up the time spent researching, writing, and editing and the returns start to look depressing. Most authors write because they have an urge to do so, not because it pays well.

About the author

Short stories by AJ have been published in magazines, summer specials, international competitions, broadcast on radio and recorded for audio books.

Books on Kindle by AJ Barnett

  • Short Moments
  • Yesterday
  • The Taste of Loneliness
  • Brief Impressions
  • Without Reproach
  • Just About Write




The Competition

  • The likelihood of a novel being published becomes easier after your first one is sitting on bookstore shelves - but only marginally.
  • As a published author, each new book you produce is still in contest with many thousands of others. It will only succeed if the qualities are what the publisher is after at that instant. No matter how good it is, if it doesn’t suit their list it won’t be accepted.
  • Publishers seldom offer to publish more than two books at a time, even by well-established writers – so writing full time can be more worrying than a part time writer who has another job.
  • Publishers rarely offer retainers to writers – which is easier to come to terms with if you are a part time writer.

The Contract.

You might be thrilled upon reading a publishing contract, particularly when noticing option clauses. Regretfully, an option clause gives the publisher the opportunity, NOT the obligation, to publish any further books. No guarantees are offered.

What every writer should know.

  • Even well-established writers suffer rejection.
  • Very few books gross substantial amounts of money. You will need a lot of books published to bring in even a moderate income.
  • Writing full time is unreliable. Financial stress can turn authors into hacks.
  • Writing full time, leaves writers little time for experimentation. Full time writers need to produce books they know have a likelihood of acceptance.
  • Writing full time is isolating. Most people need the company of colleagues. A part time writer has the best of both worlds.
  • Writing full time needs a regular source of new themes - not easy when stuck in front of a keyboard. Other people are often a source of ideas. A part time writer doesn’t lose the connection.

Only a few disciplined fiction writers accomplish stories that sell, year after year. For the majority, the stress of writing to make a living can shrivel creativeness. There may be the flaws in writing part time, but there’s a lot to be said for it. Think hard before giving up the day job….

Where the author lives

03727 Xaló, Alicante, Spain

get directions


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    • ajbarnett profile imageAUTHOR


      8 years ago from Costa Blanca, Spain

      Thank you for visiting, Starcreate.

    • StarCreate profile image


      8 years ago from Spain

      Insightful points, thank you for setting this down

    • Dame Scribe profile image

      Dame Scribe 

      9 years ago from Canada

      I would fall into the p/t category. Single parents got learn juggle a lot of responsibilities but I love writing. Great tips!

    • Mmiller_89 profile image

      Michael Miller 

      9 years ago from Las Vegas

      I like what you getting at. Writing full time is what many of us really want to do, but in the end it has a lot of disadvantages compared to part-time writing. Thanks, you changed my way of thinking on this.


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