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3 Reasons Why It is Important to Have Lots of Interests as an Author

Hey Sweetheart 👋🏽


Depending on how long we’ve known each other, you’ve probably noticed that I am one of those “all over the place” types of people who has TONS of interests and hobbies.



(If you haven’t noticed, WELCOME FRIEND 🤗 you must be new! Nice to meet you!!)


But before now, when I was still figuring my stuff out, I used to feel bad for having so many interests and things that make my world go round.


Recently (within the last 3 years) I realized that I don’t have to keep my interests “separate but equal” like some horrific Jim Crowe era nightmare, and actually combined my two biggest interests to create an innovative new genre within literature that I call “immersive fiction.”

(Still need to figure out how to get that registered as a real genre lol)


“Immersive Fiction” is fiction that brings one or more additional elements such as sculpture, music, video, etc, to bring the reading experience to the next level.


My best friend, Elise Thornback, actually sculpts her characters AND illustrates her novels, bringing the characters to life without having to hire models and worry about expensive special effects make up. (Truly, it’ll be an amazing day when she finally gets a movie offer from the Jim Henson Studios.)




MY immersive fiction series combines fiction with original music to bring the main character (PNK KanD) to life.


It is something that I never thought could go hand in hand because it never has before, and, most times, us humans do not realize that things are possible until we see other humans doing it first.


The PNK KanD Project was born out of a conversation I’d had with someone on Instagram, when I discovered that a book of lyrics would be just as appealing as a second book of poetry, and the rest is history.


So, why is it important that you have multiple interests in your life, especially as an author??


1.) Helps You Avoid Burn Out!


Yes!!!! There is nothing quite as frustrating as working on a beloved project until you hate it or feel stifled by it.


As a self-published author, this is CRUCIAL. You write the first draft and then you have to go 5-rounds with editing like you’re fighting for a championship belt! It’s really easy to start out bright eyed and bushy tailed only to become jaded by the next step in the process.


Having something else to work on, other than writing, is a great way to reset your brain and gives you additional creative outlets for when your writing well runs dry.


Over the summer, I actually crocheted this dress for myself because crocheting gives me the ability to relax and “turn my brain off” while doing something productive with my hands.


{Stay tuned for the blog post about this dress!}


Elise and I talk about it ALL the time — I’m working on writing PNK KanD lyrics because I hit a wall working on FNH2; she’ll get into spurts of prioritizing sculpting or illustrating to give herself a break from the (impressive) task of making up stories.



Breaks are important and you shouldn’t beat yourself over the fact that you don’t feel like writing today. Having other things to do will help you with your mindset and mood when you’re just not in the mood to write but still want to make progress on SOMETHING.



2.) Helps You Unlock Innovative Ideas


This one is a little bit of a gimme, but it is true.


I never would have invented the PNK KanD Project if I hadn’t already spent half a decade filling notebooks with song lyrics in my free time.


Granted, I wrote all new songs for the PNK KanD Project because none of my personal lyrics fit the vibe of the character, BUT, the point remains that: BECAUSE I have tried on so many hats in my free time, I was able to create something completely original and different in a (debatably) oversaturated market.


And the important thing is that it is a project and industry innovation of my heart. I did not create the PNK KanD Project as a cash grab (shiiiii, this series is slated to be 14 books long! It’s too in depth to be a cash grab 🤣🤣🤣), I created it because it was what my soul was called to do. So, regardless of sales, it is something that makes me happy and that I am very proud of because it is very unique and something all it’s own — because it possesses MY individual spice.



3.) Helps You Avoid Putting All Your Eggs in One Basket


This one also feels like a “gimme.” It is pretty obvious that having varied interests is a good way to round out your skills and be a balanced human being — in life, personal relationships, and business.


But it bears repeating:

Having multiple talents, interests, and skill sets increases your personal value.


And if you’re reading this thinking, “Awe fuck, Eiry has WAY TOO HIGH of expectations, I just want to write!!!” No biggie! I’m not even just talking about creative stuff.


Being a self published author means that you will need to know how to run an independent publishing house, and all the fun shenanigans that come with it.


Maybe you “just want to write,” but you’re also amazing at inspiring a team to help you edit and get you feedback on your manuscript. Or maybe you’re an absolute champ-champ at organic online/social media marketing — that is a skill set ya know!!


Having various skills and interests means that you will always be able to stand out from the crowd, even just at your day job.


When I was a kid, there was a really inspiring story my dad always told me. I can’t remember who it was about — a famous black dancer. Her mom told her that she could always dance as a doctor, but she couldn’t be a doctor if all she knew how to do was dance.


Meaning — her mother supported her dreams but also wanted her to have back up plan upon back up plan so that she would never struggle.


(*BONUS*) Add Extra Spice to Your Story Telling without Adding Extra Lies


My two biggest “non creative” interests are cooking and camping/exploring the outdoors. (“Non creative” is in questions cuz both of those things require creativity 😂😂😅) So, a lot of my fiction work has mention or scenes of either really good home cooking, or some kind of camping/off grid living (or a little of both!)


Being able to weave your practical interests into your story telling adds an element of realism, even to a genre like Spec.Lit, that doesn’t seem forced in any way. ☺️




So, there you have it Sweetheart, Eiry’s 3 reasons why you should have varied interests, plus one bonus one.


The biggest thing I want you to take away from this post though, is that you are perfect just the way Cosmos saw fit to create you.


Never let anyone convince you that you are “too much” (or not enough) just because you are a flamingo in a flock of pigeons 🦩


You can write books AND make rap music if that’s what you want to do. You can be a dancer AND a doctor. It’s not up to anybody else but you.


And those people who are side eyeing your hopes, dreams, and inspirations are just doing so because they’re intimidated by you. What you’re venturing out to do would scare the shit out of them, so they’re scared for you and projecting that onto you.


Don’t listen to them.

That’s their business; not yours.



If you’d like more writing tips to help further your own self-publishing career, check out my podcast: Writing w Eirian

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3 Comments


heathermckown
heathermckown
Oct 07, 2023

Absolutely for more authors showcasing their other skills. It really brings such a unique element to the books 😊

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heathermckown
heathermckown
Oct 11, 2023
Replying to

Absolutely!

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