Wednesday, May 29, 2013

(Business) But I’m a Writer, Not a Business Person!

Scripture commands us to speak the truth in love (Ephesians 4:15), so I will now speak the truth to you in love.  If you want to be a published writer, you must not only be a writer, but you must also be a business person.  Even if you have someone else handling all of your writing-related business affairs, you will still have to give your input and have some idea of what is going on in your writing business. Why? Because Scripture also commands us to “know the state of your flocks” (Proverbs 27:23).  In modern parlance, this means to know what’s going on in your writing business.

If you don’t want to publish your writing in the commercial market, none of this applies. But if you want to see your work in print and get paid for it, then you will have to come to grips with the business side of writing.

After more than 30 years as both a writer and a business person, I’ve come to the conclusion that a key reason some writers disdain the business aspect of writing is that they disdain business in general. And the reason they disdain business in general is that they consider the business profession inferior to the writing profession. Art, after all, is higher than business, right? In my humble opinion, this attitude smacks of arrogance and pride, and most writers guilty of arrogance and pride would deny it.  That’s the subtle danger of arrogance and pride.

But, you may be one of those writers who simply dislikes the business side of writing but does not disdain it.  There is a big difference between dislike and disdain.  To dislike something does not imply disrespect, nor does it prevent one from doing it, if necessary.  To disdain something means to look at it condescendingly, as beneath one’s dignity.

So, what about you? Do you simply dislike the business side of writing, or do you disdain it?  Or, perhaps, you are one of those rare writers who loves the business aspect of writing.  If so, please let us know your secret.

Copyright 2013 by MaryAnn Diorio, PhD. All Rights Reserved.

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