Publication – Risking All for a Dream

Karen writing
Karen Writing, photo by Richard Johnson

Yesterday I read an eight-page (plus Exhibits) publishing contract that might lead to my dream.

Contracts can be frightening when you read all the fees you must come up with, as well as where all duties lie, and there are a lot of them. All those items you discussed are now on paper in black and white—legal, or about to be.

Many folks who have been party to real estate contracts know what I mean. That feeling you get when you are sitting at the table with your agent and are signing all those documents, one after the other. It is as though you are signing your life away.

Only one document, yet this effort to publish my novel At What Cost, Silence? is a risk, as it is taking a major chunk out of my savings. My only income is a small social security check each month. I had to think hard about these facts when I learned what publication is going to cost. Brooke Warner with She Writes Press mentioned $10,000, which included their fee, editing, processing, printing, shipment, not including publicity and numerous other fees which would be more than $5,000. Yes, any writers out there, take a good, hard look. These costs are standard.

I decided to walk away from the entire experience for a few hours.

Watched a Netflix program. Let it all ruminate in the back of my mind.

Later that evening it was as though one of those comic lightbulbs flashed on in my head. Truly.

All my life I have had jobs that I didn’t like.

Probably like many of you out there, I did them to make a living. I worked my way through college to get a degree to teach art, but I moved out of state and schools dropped art from the curriculum at the time I graduated, so I couldn’t get a job teaching. 

  • I ended up as a secretary for years, and hated it.
  • Took paralegal classes, but that wasn’t fulfilling either.
  • Worked at an art gallery and designed and facilitated their web site, but that was only fulfilling until it turned into the same process day after day.

This novel, though, is my dream.

It is about equality and learning to be your true self, which has meaning that is worth the risk I am taking to get it published. 

I have felt more alive since learning I would be published than in the last few years. I have learned more in the last month than I have since college. This is not merely living from day to day. This is a dream of an adventure that will last the next couple years and beyond. That dream is worth $10,000 and more.

Most important. To have something in my life worth living for, something meaningful.

My jobs were meaningless, merely survival, a means of putting food on the table, paying for the car, and taking a vacation now and then.

Even if the novel fails, it will have been worth the journey and the risk.

Road Less Traveled, Photo from Wana Commons by Rebecca Barray

Any thoughts on your dreams, journeys, and risks you have taken? Do you have a dream? What would you risk all for?






One response to “Publication – Risking All for a Dream”

  1. Diann Klink Avatar
    Diann Klink

    I am so happy my sister is following her dream. It recalls those nights when we were kids and you would start telling me a story–dad would yell at us to get to sleep. It would be quiet for a few minutes. Then the whispers would start, risking all to get that story out. Don’t be afraid of those few who may tell you to be quiet. There are so many more out there waiting to hear your story!
    Love & hugs, sis.

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