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Someone asked me last night what the typical day is like for a full time author. Now, that’s a pretty common question, and I receive quite a few others, but it made me think. This is a strange and wonderful business we are in, and I’ve actually learned a lot that has surprised me.
So, what have I learned from being a writer?
– People think the day of a writer is glamorous and involves bon bons, mojitos and a sexy assistant who cleans your pool and dresses in a sexy thong.
– People are often disappointed to realize that authors don’t make “movie star” amounts of money.
– People think that you being a writer entitles them to ask all sorts of personal and inappropriate questions they would never ask someone in another profession. (How much do you make, How many people have you slept with, does writing all those sex scenes mean you’re a nymphomaniac, won’t your children be ashamed of you for writing that?)
– Everyone is fascinated by what you do. Some have fantasized about being a writer themselves, and others think it’s one of those deliciously wicked things they can look down upon and say they met a real life writer (sort of like a real live gangster, prostitute etc)…LOL
– People think that if they give you a story idea (like you don’t already have 10 thousand of them on your own) that you can write the story and then split the money. They really don’t realize that writing the book is the hard part, not coming up with the idea.
– Every inch of space within a bookstore is real estate – bought and paid for by the publishers. If your book is face out, or on an end cap, or on a front table etc – paid for by the publishers.
– People don’t realize that every weird thing they do or tell you about is fair game for going in one of your books or blogs.
– That with the big pubs, it takes over a year to get your book published and sitting on a shelf. And readers have no idea it works this way and thinks the writer just writes slow.
– Many people view writing as a misguided profession that we will grow out of once we grow up or accept responsibility.
– Every artist and several models on Myspace mistakenly think that by contacting the author, they can get their work on our cover. (For those of you who don’t know – most of the time, the author gets little to no input into the cover)
– That word of mouth is the best promotion.
– That my husband is proud to tell his friends his wife writes both erotic paranormal romance and paranormal romance, but he refuses to read my books…lol.
– People think that any sex act or situation in my book is from personal experience. (I had one reader ask me where she could buy an altar like the one in Ceremony of Seduction. Uh….Altars R Us? LOL!)
– That writing is my calling and I truly love it.