Bring On the Awkward Pause


Recently, I was introduced to a group of people by a friend of mine.  This question was of course asked:

What do you do?

I’m a writer.

Oh, anything I know?

Probably not, I write under the name Hadena James.

No, I haven’t heard of those.  What are they?

(they’re books, duh!)  Well, I mostly write fantasy where demons are not evil and thrillers about serial killers and a sociopathic US Marshal who hunts them.

Oh.  *insert awkward pause*

First, it’s hard to justify yourself as a writer if the person you’re talking to has never heard of your books and lives in your town.  Second, everything I write is a little off the wall.  Third, most people do not want the intricate, boring details of writing.  They want to know if it pays well.  And this does not mean they want you to go into detail about how book sales work.  They want a dollar figure.  Rude, but true.  For me, I don’t mind discussing how much I make with other authors, but the general public doesn’t need to know what was on my tax forms when I filed this year.

After the awkward pause, there is always a moment when you feel the need to justify that you are indeed a real writer with books published, even if you published yourself.  This means resisting the urge to grab my smartphone and show them my books on Amazon, B&N, and iBooks.  Or possibly dragging out the pictures of covers that I have stored in my phone (because yeah, I’m that sort of geek; my background is Elysium Dreams and my lock screen is Mercurial Dreams and I have given my mother-in-law an iPhone cover with one of my book covers printed on it – however, this has helped me make a few sales, so geeky, but effective).

I can’t imagine what my mother or my mother-in-law thinks when they tell people I’m a writer…

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1 Comment

  1. I’d think they love you and want you to succeed so if they’re like my mom and someone said something negative – they would defend you tooth and nail:). Wish both your mom’s a Happy Mother’s Day and enjoy the weekend!

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