If it's not one thing, it's another. So, I finally decided to start podcasting again. I recorded the first episode of "The Nonbinary Writer," and YouTube has now made it easier for us to upload our podcasts on their platform. We can simply put in the RSS, and off it goes into the wild blue yonder.
There it goes. It automatically makes the video for me, which is great because I don't have the time or patience to do that. So, instead of writing this week, since I started recording podcast episodes again, I find myself creating thumbnails for popular episodes. It's something I had never intended to do but thought might actually help me in the algorithm, because, to my surprise, people are actually listening to the podcast on YouTube.
So, if you're new to listening to me and you're on YouTube, hi! How are you? And if you're listening to me through any other platforms, hi, hello. My name is Charlie, and I am a nonbinary writer. I really wanted to be writing this week, but one of the most important things that I think we have to understand as writers is that if we're not focusing on getting the word out, on building a platform, and finding a way for people to know that we exist, then the writing doesn't matter all that much.
While I love to believe that good writing wins out, that all you have to do is write something great and the entire world will go, "Wow, this is amazing!" – yeah, that's not really how any of this works. What we actually have to do is buckle down and get the word out, build a platform where we can tell people that we exist, build an audience, and constantly do things to make people realize that we exist.
Because that's the real work of being a writer. It's a double-edged sword, especially for LGBTQ writers like myself. The more I let people know that I exist, the more likely it is that people who don't like the fact that I exist are going to find me and tell me how much they don't like the fact that I exist.
Yeah, that's not happy-making. That's not really what I want to be doing, and it's not really a good place to be in. So, I find myself in this endless struggle between doing what I know I need to do for marketing and putting stories out and basic self-preservation. I don't like it when I get attacked simply for existing.
On the other hand, I really do like it when people read my work and get really excited about it. So, finding that middle ground, that place where I can tell people that my stuff exists, and they can go read it on Ream! Writing new material has to be balanced with this endless struggle to go out and tell people that, hey, by the way, I'm over here, I do things.
And it's been really interesting to see what stories catch on, especially with the podcast reaching this new audience. As far as this podcast goes, the episode that is doing the best on YouTube right now is the obligatory nonbinary rant. It was the first thing I actually recorded for the podcast, though it's not technically the first episode.
It's honest and from the heart, and it goes to show the one thing that I've always known about marketing: being angry and yelling and shouting is a good way to get attention, but it's not really the kind of attention that I want to get. It's not really the kind of work that I want to be doing. So, I don't do it that much.
I try really hard not to be that person. I think there's enough negativity out in the world.
I don't want to be a cause of more negativity. I don't want to just feed that pain that we feel. I want to make a change. I want it to be better. And that's the struggle that I find myself trapped behind. When weeks like this happen and here I am, just trying to play catch up. Getting all of my ducks in a row so that hopefully the podcast will do well on this new platform and I can build it up to monetization because, while it's gross and disgusting and I hate thinking about it, much less talking about it, if I don't make money off of what I'm doing, then I can't really afford to do it.
So, I have to think about those things. I have to ask myself, what's the best thing I can do for the business right now? What's the best thing that I can do to make this grow? And whether I was right or wrong, making thumbnails for the episodes felt like the right thing to do. And now, I'm sitting here wishing I was writing, wishing I had written a lot more this week.
And not having done any of that.
I want to tell these stories. I want to be doing World Ember. But I haven't really done anything for World Ember this year. I haven't really written much this month at all.
And that makes me sad. And I hate to just say it flat out like that; I should be more poetic about it, but I've been doing the business things. I've been setting up the Ream account, I've been working on a commissioned project that I'm doing that looks like I will be getting paid for, which, considering it started off as a volunteer project, kind of blows my mind.
And I've got the podcast to do again.
All the while, in the back of my mind, I see spaceships and wizards and magic and mysteries and stories that I want to be telling.
Many times in the past, I've buckled down and tried to work on getting a schedule. Which doesn't always work out. I have a lot of physical pains and, well, chronic pain to be more general and specific.
So, I don't always get to do the things that I want to do when I want to do them. But I think I really need to start setting aside morning time for writing. Get my pages in. I need to get my pages in. So hopefully next week I'll get to start with that, and I'll probably try to get back into the habit of going to the Dawdling Writer's write-ins on YouTube, and maybe even doing some of my own, because I miss hanging out with y'all while writing.
Yeah, getting the work done is important. Even when it's the boring, business-y work part. But if I'm not writing, I'm not writing. And so that's where I need to put my focus.