Wednesday, December 02, 2009

The best thing about being a published writer...

It's got to be the money, right? OK, maybe not. It's communing with the muse to nail that perfect sentence, then? Perhaps - I'll let you know when I've managed it.

I can only speak from my own experience. The thing that's suprised and delighted me the most is the occasional email I've received from a reader previously unknown to me, saying how much they enjoyed the book. Writers are highly visible in these days of blogs and the internet, and it's the work of seconds in most case to find out how to contact a writer who's prepared to be contacted. It's still a thrill to get an email from a stranger with whom your book has made a connection. I've seen online and in print reviews from readers of The Dog of the North who found the book unsatisfactory; these people have, from delicacy, trepidation or indifference, refrained from contacting me directly. As a result, the emails I've received have been uniformly positive.

The Dog of the North may not have sold enough to make the series commercially viable, but it's always a thrill to find that someone who picked up one of the few thousand copies to make it out of the bookshop thought enough of it to track down the author and say so. Your good wishes--as well as your good taste--are much appreciated.

5 comments:

Frances Garrood said...

I agree, Tim, but perhaps the best thing of all is THAT first email or phone call that tells us we're going to be published writers. For me, that takes a lot of beating.

Tim Stretton said...

I was so stunned by Will's email that I don't think I ever fully appreciated it. I was at work when I got it so wasn't able to perform the cartwheels that would have been justified.

Having been sick with worry about the book launch I was astonished by how much I ended up enjoying that too.

Matt Curran said...

Hi Tim

I have to agree, fan mail is one of the best things about being a published author (though that first letter of acceptance takes some beating). I'll be posting a full reply over on my blog on this as that whole idea of "best things about being published" has got me thinking...

Elfy said...

Sorry to hear that there won't be a follow up to Dog of the North, Tim. I had a few issues with the book, but I enjoyed it more than a lot of other things I've read this year and was hoping to see more about how Beauceron came to be who he was.

Tim Stretton said...

Thanks for your sympathy, Elfy, and glad you enjoyed the book (and even more so for the 'issues' - balanced appreciation is better than adulation!).

There is a middle-period Beauceron to be written one day - but sadly not yet.