31 March 2013

In Which I Stop Submitting for Awhile

By Gayle Francis Moffet

Having recently written a post that breaks down the different kind of rejections a writer can receive and why none of them are bad, it may seem weird to admit that I'm hitting a point where I simply don't want to submit for awhile. Here's the thing:

  • Finding markets that fit your work takes time.
  • Waiting for responses from markets takes time.
  • To really see the results of submitting, you have to keep up a steady stream of writing to continually send out.

The first two points are points I can generally work with. Finding markets and waiting to hear from them are part of the writing process to me, as I'm sure they are for many writers. You write. You edit. You submit. You wait. The problem I've been having lately is that while I'm still writing, I'm not writing anything I can submit.

You see, I've spent the last couple of months writing comics. Well, one comic that keeps getting longer (and more awesome), and comics don't require a submittal. In fact, ask around, and you'll be told the best way to break into comics in this day and age is to get a website, get an artist, and get your work online. The book publishing industry is still trying to decide how it feels about self-published writers, but people involved in the comics industry--both publishers and fans--realized a few decades ago that there's something to be done with self-publishing and that people who self-publish can tell amazing, interesting stories that are well worth their time and money.

I love this about comics; that it's a medium that not just encourages but recommends self-publishing as a viable option. Is it hard work? Of course. But it doesn't come with the stigma that self-publishing in book publishing does. You create your work. You put your work out there, and people will read your work without caveat. Fan of Hark a Vagrant? Self pub. Penny Arcade (NSFW most likely)? Self-pub. Basically, if you're reading a web comic, you're reading a self-published author.

And me? I found myself having to make a decision: I could split my time between writing stories for markets and working on comics, or I could just concentrate on comics, which seems to be what I want to write right now. It's not that I don't have ideas for short stories or poems or non-fiction pieces that could go to any number of markets; it's that, right now and for weeks now, all I've wanted to do is sit down and write comics.

And read them, of course.

I encourage you, if you find yourself writing a certain type of writing, to keep writing that. You'll get so much farther writing what interests you than writing what you expected yourself to write. I've known for awhile I wanted to write comics, and I assumed it would be in tandem with the other stories, but it turns out I just want to write comics with no qualifiers, and I'm having more fun even thinking about doing that than sitting down to write anything else.

So, I'm gonna do that (and this blog), and I hope you're having as much fun as I am.

Gayle Francis Moffet writes comics, it seems. Before she fell into that, she wrote some other stuff. She keeps a writing tumblr that has all the links to all that jazz. 

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