People often wonder why I’m not rolling in money now that I have several books in print. Since someone just asked me about it again, I thought I’d address things briefly.
Basically unless you’re someone with a big name or a big story, most authors make mere pennies per book sold. For every copy of one of my books sold through normal vendors, when the royalties finally trickle down to me, it comes out to maybe 50 cents per book that I actually see in my pocket (and much of that gets held in reserve against returns from bookstores, etc.). Because my books are all older, their heyday is long past and the sales are pretty quiet these days. But even at the height of sales, it was still nothing more than a semi-money making hobby. Now it’s just a twice-a-year check that’s maybe enough to pay one bill that month. Besides, making a living off writing books was never something I actively pursued. It just sort of fell out of the sky when I was offered my first book contract years ago through a connection I’d made online. I’ve probably given away more copies of my books than I’ve ever sold. For me, getting helpful information into people’s hands has always been what’s important about my books and online activities.
Also, when my family faced the serious challenges we went through several years ago with my huband’s illness, etc., I had to essentially stop doing any publicity and online activities for a long, long time. When momentum for things like that die, it’s really difficult to get the ball rolling again.
I also worked for awhile several years ago as the Outreach Director for a local church which took me out of the whole writing/editing/publishing/publicity world for awhile, as well. All that to say, I’m still recovering emotionally, mentally, physically, spiritually, and financially from the hard knocks of life and there just hasn’t been time or gumption to work on the book stuff.
Returning to college full-time has been a healing choice for me, and a lifelong dream come true. My priorities will always be with my family, and I suspect I’ll probably never really get back to blogging, writing, or speaking at the same level I was doing ten years ago. I think it’s a season of my life that has passed, for the most part.
I’ve been thinking about shutting down my various blogs and just sort of letting my online presence disappear. Most of my blogs (including this one) have been pretty much neglected by me in the midst of life and especially this past year with the new crisis situations we’ve faced. And honestly, I’m not even really sure if anyone still reads any of my blogs anymore. Newer, younger, fresher, more tech-savvy voices have risen up online. I sometimes feel like a dinosaur. ;-)
I’d been sort of hoping to write more this summer, but after writing so many research papers in school this year (with more to come once Fall Quarter starts up soon), it’s been nice to take a break from writing … and just play my piano, hang out with my kids (and cats), and declutter my house (lots of housework to catch up on after this past year of hyperfocusing on schoolwork).
Not sure where I’ll go from here with online activities. Sometimes I feel like I have little — if anything — to say anymore. ”Yes, you too can watch your life fall apart around you. So come follow me. I’ll show you how you too can feel like a failure in life and love and parenting and everything.”
PTSD sucks. Had I mentioned that before? A few years ago, one of my doctors had me answer a questionaire about how PTSD was affecting my life, and at the time, the results said that I was 60% disabled. Yikes. It was causing problems in nearly every realm of life. I know things are MUCH better now than it was back then, but I also know I still have a ways to go in my healing and recovery.
If you think about me, prayers are always appreciated. I think I’m going to end this before I start crying. Yeah, tears still flow when I start thinking about where I’ve been and what I’ve gone through the past ten years or so. I don’t want to be that downer friend that everyone wants to avoid. But some days I know that I am. I guess today’s one of those days. Sorry. I’ll stop now.
PS: I was just digging through some old posts on this blog and found this one that seems to echo much of what’s in today’s post: Remembering and Ruminations