Posts Tagged: writing dreams

On Being a Writer

I find it hard to believe we have already been residing in Tennessee for two years. Time seems irrelevant when one is retired. Although, I’m not really retired. My husband is. I always dreamed of this time when he could kick back and support my writing endeavors and I could write us off into the sunset on my success.

Well, as the saying goes, “the best laid plans” is true as I’ve found life does not always go the way we want it to. Even though I am writing novels, articles and stories for anthologies, I still don’t feel I am pulling my weight. In fact, to be honest, even though I am pursuing my second-grade dream, in the eyes of the world, I am not a success. I’m spending more than I have made.

As I press on, many would call what I do a hobby. But most people don’t realize how much work goes into being a writer.

Here’s a little insight:

Words don’t always come easy to a novelist. If I were to write 2,000 words a day, every day of a month, like I did during the November NaNoWriMo challenge, I could finish a novella. A regular novel is 85,000 to 100,000 or more words.

Every story takes time – a lot more time to write than it does to read. If the writer has a publisher, the finished manuscript goes to them next, and a whole process of editing takes place. The editing process often includes three steps: general edit, concept edit, and line edit.

There is also cover art to consider, but most of the time the writer has no say in this decision. Needless to say, it all takes time – a lot of time.

Before and after the book is published, there is marketing to do. Most marketing is the responsibility of the author. Here is where the readers can help the writer by leaving reviews on every website that sells books.

Marketing is a whole other blog topic, but necessary for the success of the author. And again, marketing takes time – time away from writing more, not to mention the cost of promoting your writing.

I’m sure most writers enjoy creating their stories for their awaiting fans. But for those of you who have other occupations, being an author is not a cushy position to be taken lightly. Writing is hard work and is a financial investment. But those of us who do it, love it and will keep writing until we go to Heaven.

But in the meantime, I hope to make a profit one day.

Blue Ridge Mountains Christian Writers Conference

Steve Laube and Christy Hoss

My stomach was in knots as we drove onto the conference grounds.

Ridgecrest Conf Ctr

I remember that feeling from the very first conference I attended back in 2008. I wanted to turn the car around and go home, despite the beauty of the mountains surrounding us.

Driving to Blue Ridge writers conference

Why did I feel this way? I’ve been attending conferences for more than 15 years. I am certainly not inexperienced. Maybe it was the three-year break due to COVID or maybe it was because I am in need of some serious change as a writer.

As things got started and the first general session’s speaker began, my exuberance bubbled out. I couldn’t help but shout a few “amens.” Afterwards a writer turned around and told me how she appreciated hearing them and she gave me a beautiful card and pen.

I met up with a friend from Mount Hermon Christian Writers Conference.

Christy Hoss and Jon Vonhof

To be truthful, it reminded me of my first conference: navigating a new campus, figuring out what workshops to take, and making appointments. But this time, the appointments were with old friends.

Steve Laube and Christy Hoss

Needless to say, the nerves went away quickly. And thanks to my praying friends and time on my knees, the conference is now a priority for me, not only to attend, but to be involved in.

God gave me some divine appointments, including one with the director of the conference just as we were preparing to leave.

Edie Melson and Christy Hoss

God is making all things new. Keep praying for me and the future of my writing. I will always keep you posted.

My Reason for Blogging

Christy Hoss writing on laptop

Christy Hoss writing on laptopRecently I read a blog post on writing. I try to read things that are uplifting and encouraging, but after reading this one, I crashed into a deep, dark hole of writing woes.

The article said that if you don’t have anything to offer your readers, why write?

So, I asked myself, “Why do I write?”

It goes all the way back to second grade. I dreamed of writing all my life. Now that I am published, my purpose for writing is to keep telling stories.

But why do I write a blog?

Does anyone care about what I have to say?

After much evaluation, I have come to the conclusion that I write because I want to connect with people. I want my readers to know I am a real, imperfect person with all kinds of problems, pursuing her life’s dream of being an author.

The point is, people need each other. If I reach one person with my musings, that is why I write.

I also have stories roaming around in my head that demand I put them to the page. If I don’t get them out, the characters will drive me crazy!

Also, I know beyond a shadow of a doubt God has called me to write for Him.

The Birth of a Book

When I was a second grader, my teacher, Mrs. Olson, told me I was destined to be a writer.

I wrote five pages about my dog and won first place in the writing contest Mrs. Olson created for her second-grade writers. That was in 1972 and I never forgot her words, always dreaming of becoming an author.There is no feeling more exhilarating than opening a box to find a dozen books with your name on the front. I compare the process to giving birth. There’s the conception, the long haul of putting words into story… and that is only the beginning.

For the most part, the process can take a lot longer than nine months of carrying a baby. Only writers can understand how much work it takes to finally hold your baby, the fruition of hard work in your hands: A book with your name on the over.

It begins with an idea.

Thanks to my friend Susan K. Stewart, who listened to my idea and said the three words authors love to hear, “Send it in,” I have a middle-grade book series.

The Rubber Band series by Christy Hoss

Susan and I became friends, and she shared with me her idea for a book that was burning on her heart. I loved her idea. I wish I could have said those three words to her, but because she is an editor, she had an “in” with the publisher.

Susan had a dream, one that involved her love of donkeys.

Recently, her dream was fulfilled. A box of books arrived at her doorstep and when she opened them up, her dream for Donkey Devos was born. I love it when dreams come true.

From idea to the page, from the page to pitching to a publisher, from the publisher to the editing process and from the editing process finally to print, writing is hard work.

But because I have dreamed of writing my entire life and recently birthed my second book, to me, the entire process truly is my labor of love.