Worst Things About Being A (Published) Teen Writer

Friday, May 7, 2010

"I write for the same reason I breathe-because if I didn’t I would die."
- Isaac Asimov

This post isn't intended to be negative, at all. I'm more than super grateful to be getting published, don't get me wrong. But there are a lot of things I didn't expect, and that no one told me would happen - so I thought I'd tell you what those things are.

  1. Everybody resents every tiny iota of success you get. Which I get. I get jealous when other people get multi-book six-figure deals. I wish I didn't. I wish I could just be happy for them. But I think it's the natural state of human beings. Being envious. I wish this didn't happen.
  2. Everyone will claim responsibility. "Oh yes, I encouraged her writing all along. She couldn't have done it without me!" Yes. People will say this. They will be fibbing. You will cringe.
  3. Everyone will assume your parents wrote the book for you. Until they meet your parents and discover your parents are too glamorous and awesome and busy to read books, let alone write them.
  4. Everyone will try and psycho-analyse your book. Especially people who aren't psycho-analysts. Everyone will think that everything you put into your book is a direct reflection of you. And when everyone in your book is mentally unstable and very depressed, they're going to assume that's what you're like.
  5. The self-doubt doesn't go away. It gets worse. A lot worse. It did for me.
  6. Taxes are a nightmare. Yeah, don't really need to add anything to that.
  7. You can't tell people you're getting published without them thinking you're totally arrogant. Which I don't like. Because other people will be talking about being aspiring authors and I can't say, Oh, I'm getting published, I can tell you about publishing, without people going, Oh, Steph's totally full of herself. Really, I'm not. I'm just trying to make conversation. Being published is the only vaguely interesting thing that's ever happened to me.
  8. Your mum will have to go with you everywhere. And your mum is really awesome, and people will really like your mum. But come on, you're the author! Mum, don't be offended when your read this.
  9. Writing becomes harder. Which makes no sense. I mean, if you know you're going to earn money from it, shouldn't it become easier? And yet, no.
  10. A lot of people tell you 'You only got published because you're a teenager.' This is probably what bothers me most. The people who say this are the ones who believe getting published is Impossible and only happens if you have Industry Contacts. And they think you somehow Paid Somebody Off in order to get published. Guys, I don't have enough money to pay people off.
Remember guys - I'm not complaining! (Okay, maybe I am. Please, no one leave negative comments! I know I'm a total sook already.) I'm just telling you the things I was surprised about when I got a book deal.

Soon - the best things about being a published teen writer!
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