Commitment



For the last decade or so, I've been toying with the idea of setting up shop on the internet--"creating a web presence" as it were. Prevailing wisdom says it's a good career move for the unpublished author. It shows commitment apparently.

Silly me, I thought showing up to write a book and submitting it showed commitment, but I guess you have to advertise that sort of thing?

I didn't buy into the web presence thing right away, but lately I've given it more serious thought. One of the reasons I hadn't set up camp was because I was playing a game of chicken with the Publishing Industry, waiting for them to blink first and offer me a publishing contract. At which time I would, of course, receive thousands of extra minutes in my day to master the craft of designing a website, build one and maintain it with flare.

Time is a genuine hurdle for me. I have a full-time job, two kids and a hungry husband, so I'm your average Mom with a full calendar, but I'm also a very committed writer who makes time for writing every day. How? I say 'no' to a lot of things: bottle drives, on-line socializing and even in-person parties. The only thing I say no to that doesn't make me feel guilty is housework.

So I rationalized quite legitimately that maintaining a website would be just one more thing to do. I was also unconvinced that an unpublished author's website says anything except 'I exist.' If you're published you have titles to flog, but I'm unpublished. With all due respect to those who have blogged entertainingly about My Day at the DMV, I couldn't see getting on the internet train without having something profound to say.

Once I realized I long to be insightful, the idea of having a website became even more daunting. Seriously, for the most part you can put me down for escapist fiction and a side of cheap laughs. Signing myself up to make an informative contribution to the web sounds like work.

I'm not afraid of work. I have twenty years of unpublished manuscripts under my belt, which is another reason I was waiting for the validation of a publishing contract. Sure I show up to write, but there are plenty of days I wonder why I bother. How could I cut and run if I had a website that said Writer for Sale all over it? Better to keep my options open, right? Having a website would lock me in. It would be a commitment.

Groan. I began to see what having a website could say about a person--beyond branding and there's a blog already pre-written about that. Watch for it.

Meanwhile, on February 4th, 2010, I took a step toward assembling my website. I wrote this blurb and gave my logo idea to my daughter's boyfriend who (fingers-crossed) will turn it into something that reflects my brand (eye-roll.) I posted it to my About Me page on my website Feb 28 and moved it to my new blog Mar 25th. Logo from boyfriend is still pending.

Starting to feel like I should be committed.