Writing Hobbyist or Professional Author
I happened to see a post on a social media site recently and was amazed an individual who devotes all their time to the writing process, has their books professionally edited, and pays a premium price for cover art referring to what he does as a “hobby.” This Individual was, in fact, wondering if they should look into writing scripts from his books, in order to pitch them to a producer.
My horror came not from the fact that this person was interested in having their book made into a movie. Rather, I was disturbed at the reference to the writing process being referred to as a hobby.
Being an author is in no way a hobby. A successful author is one who devotes hours every day to promoting their books available on sales venues. A successful author appears at events and visits libraries or schools to talk about their profession. A successful author is always planning their next book.
There are some individuals who are writing hobbyists. They write one, two, three, or may four books. The releases are stretched out over years rather than before interest in their current books wanes. They live the dream of an author from before the internet became so big. These people imagine being on major talk shows, of having book signings at the most exclusive stores, and having people fete them as the next big name in books. They daydream rather than looking for the next story or event, the next round of editing or selecting cover art.
A professional author never refers to what they do as a hobby. It’s an insult of the worst degree. Far too many hours of the author’s time is spent on research, blogging, preparing for or doing podcasts, and sweating out a difficult plot point. A professional author is much like a long distance runner. We’re recognized from the dark circles under our eyes from long nights appeasing characters who have no clue what sleeping means. Our friends’ eyes will glaze over as we describe what this character or that is doing at this point in the story—much like a parent bragging about their child’s antics.
To be taken seriously, an author never refers to themselves as a hobbyist in any way, shape, or form. We’re far too busy working on our next book to think about that.
About the K.C. Sprayberry
Born and raised in Southern California’s Los Angeles basin, K.C. Sprayberry spent years traveling the United States and Europe while in the Air Force before settling in northwest Georgia. A new empty nester with her husband of more than twenty years, she spends her days figuring out new ways to torment her characters and coming up with innovative tales from the South and beyond.
She’s a multi-genre author who comes up with ideas from the strangest sources. Those who know her best will tell you that nothing is safe or sacred when she is observing real life. In fact, she considers any situation she witnesses as fair game when plotting a new story.