Recently I was talking to my daughter when she brought up how she was asked to do an art piece and how there was a kerfuffle when my daughter brought up payment. It was expected to be done for free because “well, it’s just art.” That because it was an artistic endeavor it didn’t mean anything. I was proud of her for holding to her stance of not just giving out work unless she feels genuinely moved to do so. And that got me to think about value. There’s value in what you create, even if you aren’t a mega success, you created something. It goes beyond just dollar signs. Plenty is put into your creation which cannot be accounted for.
“Time is more value than money. You can get more money, but you cannot get more time.” -Jim Rohn
You spend time plotting. You spend time outlining, researching, and actually writing. Then there’s more time invested in cover selection, creating or updating your website, etc… Your time goes beyond just writing and it shows in the finished product. Don’t let anyone diminish that by convincing you to undersell your work.
“This is the key to time management – to see the value of every moment.” -Menachem Mendel Schneerson
Time daydreaming is time well spent. Drifting off into space where your imagination takes over to have you creating new worlds where foxes are moon men who desperately want to get to Earth to gather enough honey to fuel their Cosmo Cannon is well worth it. Don’t let anyone convince you otherwise.
“The cost of a thing is the amount of what I will call life which is required to be exchanged for it, immediately or in the long run.” -Henry David Thoreau
When I published my book I had so many people come up to me or message me over social media to be there to support me. But as with the situation my daughter encountered, more than a few wanted free copies. Uh…no. I don’t come to work for free, and writing IS WORK! You’re purchasing a piece of the author (let’s not forget the cover artist, editor, etc) when you get a book. Aren’t they worth something? Giveaways are fine or giving a copy to a reputable blog or someone with solid connections, but just putting time and money down to just pass it out like gum? I think not.
“Every job from the heart is, ultimately, of equal value. The nurse injects the syringe; the writer slides the pen; the farmer plows the dirt; the comedian draws the laughter. Monetary income is the perfect deceiver of a man’s true worth.”
Don’t let sales or lack of them change who you are. To change the core of who you are for fame does no good for anyone. Stay true to who you are. Cherish and value your true self at all costs.
Trust in yourself, love what you do, and make you know your value even if others don’t. Until next time have a writeous day!
Matt Williams is an avid reader, a collector of many pens, an ever improving father of two, and an all-around fanboy. When he’s not wrestling with cats or a long commute you can find him hunkered down writing something imaginative. He’s working on publishing his first book Beyond Here, a middle grade story involving a coma and a singing flower with a bent stem sometime in 2016, along with a few projects with his other daughter.