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Point of View: Recognition

We all want to make a little money in this business.

Yes, most writers write because they can’t NOT write. Because there’s something inside each of us that drives us to express ourselves through the written word, putting out into the world the stories we see in our heads.

But we also want to make a living at this grand creative act, so we can afford to keep doing it.

And yet, there’s something else that most writers crave as much or more than financial compensation. We dream of that person at a con coming up to us and fangirling (or fanboying) all over us, gushing about how a story of ours changed their lives. We hope that our peers will one day recognize our achievements, and give us an award for our great work. And we long for the fantastic review that validates what we do, by the reviewer who really gets it.

In short, we want recognition.

I was fortunate enough to get a little of it this week, twice, and for that I am profoundly grateful.

The first thing that happened was the selection of my story “The Autumn Lands” to be read on Vance Bastian’s Campfire blog as his next serial project. In so doing, I’m following in the footsteps of John Inman’s story “The Boys on the Mountain” – I am thrilled to be in such fine company.

The second thing was also connected to Vance. The folks over at the WROTE Podcast launched their first ever WROTE awards this month – the Wraftas – and I won two of them. One was for being the best guest host (tied with the amazing Angel Martinez). And one called The “Vance Bastian Award for Building a Writer’s Community”:

Vancy

So it’s not an Oscar, or even a Hugo. It doesn’t matter. I was truly touched by the award, and by the recognition it represents from a group of people I hold dear.

I also had the opportunity this week to speak with an author who is tired of the treadmill, of running and running and getting neither recognition nor income for his hard work. I get it. I really do. It’s a difficult business to be in, one that seems to get more so for small-name authors every year, despite the increasing ease of self publishing in these tech savvy times.

So I want to suggest two things today. One, I’d like each of our writers to tell us something that happened to you this last year that made you feel recognized for your writing. And two, authors and readers, I’m asking you to reach out, on Facebook or otherwise, to one or two writers who made you happy with their work. Tell them you love them, and why.

You might just save their writer life. And I guarantee you will make their day.