Posted on June 9, 2017 at 12:00 AM by Sadye Scott-Hainchek

Want to become a full-time writer? Better start buttering up your spouse/partner, if you’ve got one.

Sci-fi/fantasy author Glynn Stewart, once upon a time, was among the ranks of adults whose childhood writing mojo had started to fade.

His wife nudged him back on track, and his traditional office job is long in the rearview mirror.

In between turning out more novels and attending to other household duties, he took the time to explain how he arrived at this happy day.

SADYE: Tell us about your history with writing.

GLYNN: I have always written. I have memories of my elementary school teachers being somewhat disconcerted about how I turned a story about hockey-playing mice into a gunfight. 

I finished my first novel in high school — that one will never see the light of day, though most of the ones after it either have seen publication or will in some form or another.

Going through university and postgraduate accounting education, however, it fell off until it was only an occasional hobby and not something I had any faith in making a living at.

Then my wife suggested that I tried writing shorter pieces and she’d do the covers. From that, Starship’s Mage was born.

SADYE: When did you start thinking seriously about leaving your office job, and how did you know you were ready?  

GLYNN: I was a financial analyst; my job was to assess alternatives and risk profiles and make recommendations on the best course of action.

So I applied the same skill set to when it would time to leave.

I started thinking about leaving to write full time while releasing the Starship’s Mage Episodes, but at 99 cents, those weren’t really making enough.

The launch of the Omnibus gave me hope, so I had a number that if I cleared from a single novel launch, I’d go part time at work.

I doubled that number with Space Carrier Avalon, so I went part-time. When I did so again with Hand of Mars, I made sure my replacement was trained up and left to write full time. No regrets!

SADYE: What has been the best part about being a writer? The most challenging?

GLYNN: The best part is being able to take the stories that rattle around my skull and put them on a page for other people to enjoy. I have way more ideas than I will ever possibly be able to write!

The most challenging is dealing with the sudden complete lack of external structure and interaction. With an office job, you have hours you need to be in the office. You have people you interact with five days a week.

As an author, you have none of that. If I want to skive off work for a week without thought for my targets, I can — but I will pay for it later! 

I’ve learned to handle this and impose structure on myself, but it’s been an occasionally rough ride.

SADYE: What’s been the best decision you made within your writing career?

GLYNN: If there’s one thing I think anyone going into this business absolutely has to have, that makes all of the ups and downs absorbable, it's a cheerleader.

Someone who has faith in your work when you don’t. Who tells you to keep at it when the first book only sells fifty copies. Who knows you can make this happen.

If you have someone at your back, you can find solutions to everything. But if you don’t have someone to prop you up when you lose faith in yourself, you’re at risk of giving up just when it’s all about to click into place.

I had my wife, who is the only reason any of this ever happened!

SADYE: In addition to being a writer, you’re a self-described cat housekeeper. What do they do for your writing, in return?

GLYNN: We have three cats: an eighteen-year-old black cat, a twelve-year-old tortoiseshell, and a two-year-old tabby.

The old cat thinks my working from home is the best thing to ever happen to him and he spends his entire day sitting two feet away from me watching me write.

Authors, after all, clearly require constant supervision to make sure production is up to snuff to maintain the wet food supply!

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Learn more about Glynn Stewart on his website, where his books can also be purchased, and follow him on Twitter

Categories: Author Interview

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