So, today is a very significant one in my life as a writer. No, we didn’t get signed up to a new internet service provider – haven’t even got our migration authorisation code yet and we can’t begin the move until that arrives, so we’re still on line here chez Bizarre – no, today I got my first proper royalty cheque, the one in March having only covered the period up til Christmas, ie before Testament was published.
And you know what? I feel rich.
OK, objectively I am far from rich. The amount I’ve earned is less than a third of the annual sum I gave up in cutting back on paid work but it’s still more money than I’ve ever earned in one go before. And it’s the only money I’ve ever made from writing, never having been one of those writers who enjoyed years of success in the short fiction market before moving seamlessly into novels.
And I noticed a strange thing in contemplating this royalty cheque - money earned from writing feels more worthwhile than other money.
Perhaps it’s something to do with the fact that, instead of being paid by some faceless bureaucracy which doesn’t actually have the smallest idea what I do on a day-to-day basis, the cheque sitting on my kitchen table is made up of myriad individual purchases by the reading public (even if some of them are prospective and German)
That’s why the money feels more worthwhile, because people have paid it over for this particular, specific, unique thing – my book.
So, on this very significant day in my writing life I would like to say thank you to all the people out there who have parted with their hard-earned cash to buy a hardback copy of Testament.
I am humbly and genuinely grateful.