Have been doing a lot thinking about this writing business. And, appreciating people like Maureen Crisp who trawls though cyberspace to bring us wonderful tidbits (many I pass onto my writing group).
I have been thinking about how hard it is being a writer. Oh, no: not the starving on the street writer. My accountant is well pleased with my royalty income this past financial year - it is way above the average NZ wage. (but, unlike some dodgy financial gurus, I'm not swanning it on a pacific island - my dosh got spent very quickly with the demands of a bad year filled with many 'raining days').
See, it's hard because, not only do we have to write the damn books, we have to market them, promote them, put lots of energies into getting our face and our work out there. Publishing houses have only so much time and money.
The wonderfully talented goddess who also writes great crime novels, Vanda Symon, is, I am very proud to say, a very dear friend. Last night, we were chewing the cud about the above. (it was because we've both finished! the latest project) Vanda is tireless (as am I, people might say) and generous. We both do it as do many many NZ writers, because we want to and want to make the world smile and laugh and cry and sigh and be a better place.
The reason I've been thinking about all of this is because I'm putting together a visual display of the journey of the trilogy for next weeks NZATE English conference in Christchurch. I offered the idea because I thought English teachers might find it a little bit interesting to see what goes into the development of what I'm doing. From that very first email sent to the most wonderful Vicki Marsdon of Penguin (sent in a bit of grump cos she's said no to something else) to choosing the covers (another bone of contention) to the piles and piles of research documents I went through.
Of course, it's all been happily ever after material: short listed for the NZ Post Childrens Book Awards and now the LIANZA, on the best sellers lists, me scooped up by a NYC literary agent.... and I'm not complaining. Just saying, any reward is hard earned. Very hard earned.