The Adversity of Virtue - A Guest Post by Fallon Christy

September 10, 2012
I am proud to turn over the blog reigns to Fallon Christy, a fellow writer who wanted to share her experiences on the life of a writer.

A lot of people want to be writers, imagining themselves as well known authors after their first book becomes a best seller.
Because that is the life that we writers lead. We spend everyday socializing in coffee bars and writing in large groups. While we are writing, we have fun with fellow writers in that group and discuss parts of our books. We constantly criticize each other’s work so we can improve ourselfs in the writing business. On weekends we have signings and afterwards we all have dinner together. Sunday is our day of rest when we can read books by other authors. If you want this glorious life, DON’T BECOME A WRITER.

Because to be honest, the writing process is kind of a lonely process, especially for starting writers. Connecting with other writers happens mainly through the internet. And if you are one of the few that is part of a real life writer's group, you’re lucky if you meet up twice a month. You criticize each other’s work when you have the time, and that is not very often. Because, and I don’t want to burst anyone’s bubble, you don’t write a bestseller overnight. It is most likely that you don’t write a bestseller at all. Getting as much luck as the writer of '50 Shades of Grey' is a phenomenon that is very rare, just like winning the lottery. A lot of people win the lottery every week, but it’s never you right? If you want something, you have to earn it by working very hard for it.
Yes, writing is like any other job, very time consuming, stressful with a dreadful salary, or even no salary at all. Because you only get paid when you actual sell some of your work, and that may take months, or even years.

If you have the luxury to write full time, without a job or studies that also consumes time, like I did for a while, you mostly spend your days waking up after hitting the snooze button ten times.

Followed by dragging yourself out of bed and crawling to the coffeemaker or the nearest Starbucks, to get a hot cup o’ joe. While eating your breakfast and drinking your coffee, you read up on your social media and update your profiles and blogs if necessary. If you have a freestanding house it’s easy to write at home, but if you live in a crowded apartment building, like most of us poor writers, it is not that easy. It’s usually a very noisy place and it might not be very inspirational if one of your neighbors is drilling since 8 pm, so you escape to the libray or a coffee bar with your laptop. But if you’re out of luck these aren’t very quiet places to work at either. Moments that you expect to be blissful can turn out to be complete horror scenarios. Like when pavers decide to repave the sidewalk in front of the library, so the reading lounge is filled with the beautiful sound of hammering on tiles. So try the coffee bar, only to discover that a woman had the urge to take her whole family out for coffee, including screaming and running toddlers.

And when you finally have found a nice spot to work, the other source of hold up pays a visit, a lack of inspiration. Writer's block is not a well known phrase for no reason. There are a lot of days that you have to deal with that devil. How do you beat it? Go for a walk or go see a movie, visit a relative, just change your scenery. But observe everything, because everything can be inspirational. For example talking teen girls on a bus, or someone that is waiting in line at the bakery. Or you could just curl up in a corner and cry until it’s over.

But then, at the end of the day, when you finally got a part of your story on paper, you feel fulfilled and you’re realizing that this is all you want to do for the rest of your life. It makes you the happiest person in the world, until your alarm clock goes of the next morning, and it is all starting over again. So, a life of a writer is not something to write home about, but I wouldn’t change it for the world. And if you’re not scared of by this, then you might be a writer!

Thanks Fallon! Make sure to check out other awesome posts by Fallon by checking out her blog!


  1. Awesome post. Loved to read those honest words. People have the weirdest fantasies about the writing and publishing business, so I think it's great to read about the "gory" bits of this job and still feel pleasured.

  2. Thank you, Fallon, for the encouragement! *laughs* No, you are absolutely right, and certainly right in warning the weak of heart because this business is far from easy. Advances may have made it easier to see our work published, but it has yet to make it easier for our work to be great. As you point out, we all still have to work our tails off in order to get it to that level.
    Thanks, Nicole, for providing Fallon the outlet to share this post. *waves to both of you*



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