Monday, January 30, 2012

The problem with fame ... and dogs

After something like three years I've started to take it for granted that I can take my dog to work with me. And that often my boss brings his dog.  So, on days like today when my head felt like it would explode because I had so much to do and was getting easily frustrated I was able to go sit on the couch in my boss's office and both dogs jumped up and sprawled across me (my pitbull is about 65 lbs and my boss's black lab is around 80 lbs and growing).  My boss now has a photo of that on his phone.  That may end up being my staff photo on the company website.  I think if more offices allowed people to bring their dogs to work there would be a lot less stress and a lot of happier employees.  I had a meeting this afternoon with someone about some financial/banking stuff and when she came in dressed in her nice business clothes we tried to quickly shoo the dogs into my boss's office but she said, "Oh, let them stay. You're so lucky you can bring your dogs to work!"

One of the things we were talking about while I was sitting on the couch ensconced in dog, is how to go about auctioning off a day with my boss's friend N.S. who is a famous science fiction writer, and their other friend who is semi-famous in cult circles because N.S. wrote a book about him.   I made some comment about how we could put it on eBay but as soon as I thought about it, it would completely creep me out if someone was auctioning off a day with me on eBay.  In fact, it would creep me out if anyone was auctioning off time with me to begin with.  Maybe not in our circle, and in fact I suggested we keep it just to our circle of acquaintances and regular donors.  Because every donor is known to someone in our organization.   My boss called N.S.'s friend on speaker phone and he (the friend) said we should open it up to all the rich computer geek millionaires in the world.  He is probably onto something there.  

I think I can relate to N.S. in the whole not wanting to make public appearances thing. And I wonder how he can make a living as a published author with that way of being? I was just lamenting to myself yesterday that long gone are the days of J.D. Salinger where you can just write a book and have it published and have people read it.  The last writer's conference I went to a couple years ago, it was all about marketing.  I hate doing marketing.  It has it's place and there are a lots of people who are good at it, but I want nothing to do with it because it is not my thing and I suck at it.  And I've made it this long in my life making a living plinking away at numbers in a back room and avoiding it.

This has been on my mind a lot the last couple weeks because I think this attitude is what has contributed to my couple years of writer's block.  I wrote two novels while I was stay-at-home mom with my daughter her first three years.  But between getting my horses and going back to work, I just haven't had the energy to write anything other than blog posts.  I have *ideas* in my head and occasionally I jot down some notes and some dialogue, but actually making time to write isn't happening.  Also, when I have down time I'm more interesting in "taking in" information than "putting out" information too.  Like for instance, I want to relearn algebra so that I can then relearn calculus so that I can start understanding the mathematics involved in physics as well as just the basic concepts.  I seem to have more energy for stuff like that than for writing.  If I could have everything I think I would have time to do both.  Maybe if I put aside an hour a day to write fiction and an hour a day for learning stuff and I didn't allow myself to do anything else during that time I could start writing again. 

But then the question looms it's ugly head again "What is the point of writing if I'm not going to bother trying to get it published for people to read?"  One suggestion someone made is to put it up for free on Kindle.  I might look into that.  If it is in fact free it might be worth it.  Then I could send it to my friends and have them easily read it, but not have to deal with contracts and marketing and the fear of one day becoming famous and seeing blog posts dissecting me and my writing or worse OMG articles on Yahoo about what I was seen wearing.  Ugh.  At an auction for work last year they auctioned off a couple of my books that I published back when I had my own little publishing company and one of our big supporters bought both of them.  I told him how I didn't want to try and market them because it was too unpleasant for me and he made a joke about how he could pretend he wrote them and do all the readings and honestly, that would be great!  If only I could find an actor willing to pretend to be the author and do the readings and interviews and agree not to get paid except royalties of my royalties.  I would totally go for that.

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