...And so The Adventure Begins...
This is it!
It's hard to believe, even as I write this, that I've done what I've done. As you are reading this, I am excitedly typing away, fleshing out Chapter 3 of my first novel. However, what makes this rather unbelievable for me is that all my energy and mental focus - most of which would usually be allocated throughout the day on a full-time job - is now fully directed at creating my novel, without interruption. That isn't to say that writing a novel can't be a full-time job... it's just different from my perspective, given my personal history with jobs up to this point.
Let's take a step back before my desire to talk about the future and talk a bit about my past - at least in summary. Before May 26th, 2017, the primary use of my time during the week was what most people would do: Wake up, get dressed, and get to work. Most recently, I worked at a consulting firm that provided Salesforce consulting, implementation, and support services to the nonprofit community within the United States and Canada. Unlike all my previous jobs, this was my first foray into not just consulting full-time, but working one hundred percent remote, which I found quite liberating in many ways. It was during this time that I was inspired to start work on what would be my very first novel.
Granted, I've written lots of fiction prior to this point: Fan fiction, poetry, and lots of short stories all were in my crosshairs of creativity over the years, some of which was published - either in strings of posts on a forum thread or in the papers from high school and college. However, in the grand scheme of things those stories didn't escape the narrow audience confines they were presented and I wasn't motivated to push them beyond where they were. In fact, most of what I've created over the years sit as document files in various folders on my home server and on old external hard drives. Knowing this, what was it about this one burst of inspiration toward the beginning of 2017 that was so strong that the idea couldn't be confined to the halls of my mind? To be perfectly honest, I don't quite remember the exact moment the concept for my novel was birthed, but I do remember the thoughts I had when I started to explore the concept: This had to be shared, and it has to be published!
Work on my book began March 26th, 2017, about two weeks after I purchased Scrivener to be the digital house for which my creation would grow and mature. As with many writers today, I dedicated my evenings to my book while I maintained my full-time position - and though the thought crossed my mind, I never considered leaving my career to focus on my creation. I worked through the evenings - and not every evening, mind you - typing a couple of hundred words, sometimes a thousand words, in a single session if I was compelled to stay up very late. I knew it would take time - potentially years - but I was willing to make this book a reality.
Then, toward the last half of April, everything changed. My wife, Kim, changed jobs - a significant promotion for her across the board - and with that, changed my path as well. After much discussion with her and some hand-wringing on my part, I decided to make a leap of faith: Resign from my full-time consulting job and focus all of my energy into my book. It was a hard decision - clicking the "Send" button for the email that contained my letter of resignation almost brought me to tears. But I knew this had to be done, that this was the right decision for me and my family.
I had a rare opportunity to explore my lifelong passion - ignoring the call would've been something that could've been a regret in another life. Knowing that I am now on this adventure is incredibly exciting. It will be a challenge, for sure, and the risks are high... but this is one adventure I embrace wholeheartedly.