What's Up Wednesday

What’s Up Wednesday: Officially A Professional

I know it’s been a long time coming, but I finally have big news to share. I’m officially a professional freelance writer.

As you all know, writing fiction is my passion. Unfortunately, as of yet, my fiction writing has only earned me enough to buy a new fountain pen for my collection. While it’s a nice pen, I’ve been looking for a way to make my writing pay me a living wage. While I’m not quite there yet, I just took a major step to achieving my dreams of being a full-time writer.

About a month ago, a friend from my writer’s group told me he works as a freelance writer for a company that covers automotive news. Knowing my passion for motorcycles, he offered to set me up with the editor of their motorcycle division. After a string of e-mails and writing a few sample articles for him, I’m officially the new freelance news writer for covering one of my favorite topics. Motorcycles.

My new employer

While it’s not quite enough for me to quit my job at the hotel, it’s a huge step in that direction. I’m hoping in time that I can find other freelance work. I’ve tried in the past, but unfortunately, it’s the same old catch-22. Everyone wants you to have prior experience, but nobody will take a chance on you so you can get that experience. Now that I’ll be getting that experience, hopefully soon I’ll be able to land more clients so that I can finally work from home full time. With that in mind, I’m currently in the process of updating my website to make it look more professional.

Here’s a sample of what it will look like when it’s done

For fans of my fiction, not to worry. I’m still working on that. Or, I suppose I should say, I’m finally working on it again. It’s no secret that, due to my struggles with anxiety and depression, I haven’t been writing much at all. Now, I finally feel like I’m ready to begin again. The only question is this. Do I dust off one of my old manuscripts which I haven’t touched in years? Or do I start something completely different.

Part of me is worried that after all this time, I won’t have the same voice, but I’m hoping that can be fixed during the editing process. Another part of me hates to just abandon those stories because I feel like they have a lot of potential. Besides, I put a lot of work into them, especially the one that’s about halfway finished.

Nevertheless, I am writing again and that’s the important thing. Keep an eye out for a new installment of my series on this blog “The Mongers” as well as the long-awaited sequel to my debut short story “Blood Moon” entitled “Daughters of the Flame”.

Also, if you’re at all interested in motorcycles, look for my articles on Hopefully my first one will be up there soon.

That’s it for now. Hopefully I’ll have  a treat for you on Friday.


Learning To Let Me Be Me

I’m guilty.

Guilty of trying to be something I’m not.

Most of my writing career I’ve aspired to write like Hemingway or Faulkner. Yes, I want to be a great literary figure. (We’ll get to my delusions of grandeur in another post.) It’s only recently that I’ve come to realize that the way to accomplish this isn’t to imitate the greats, but to find my own voice. Literature doesn’t want another Fitzgerald, it already has one. (Two, if you count Zelda.) What literature wants is Justin M. Kelly. It wants my unique point of view and writing style.

I’m also going to stop trying to write great literature and just write what I want to write. Just because it may fit into one genre or another, doesn’t mean it can’t also be literature. I’ve rejected way too many story ideas because they weren’t “literary” enough. At the moment I’m working on a fun little horror short story and having a bast. Literature be damned.

Although, now that I think of it, the main premise could be said to be copying themes from several stories written by the King of horror fiction. Although to be fair, trying to write a horror story that he hasn’t already covered in some form is like trying to write a comedy cartoon premise that The Simpsons hasn’t already done.