Saturday, May 28

Jumping into the Abyss – or becoming a FT writer

The Wranglers are happy to welcome author Zoë Mullins to the round corral this weekend.

I think I knew as soon as my first book was published that I couldn’t do two careers well. Either my writing suffered (because I can barely produce one book a year with my current job) or my work would suffer – and I couldn’t let that happen.

Nearly a year into the business of being a published author I gave my notice. This day has probably been a lifetime in the making, but never think it was easy.

In preparation for this, I spent the winter developing my strategic plan. That includes just what you think it might.
       ·         Vision
·         Purpose Statement
·         Goals and objectives
·         Critical Success Factors
·         Marketing Plan
·         Timeline/Schedule
For instance, one of my goals is to branch out into other genres – not that I don’t love sexy contemporary stories meant for 18+ – but I equally love cozy mysteries, and paranormal romance. I have never written a cozy mystery but I have two full-length paranormal manuscripts ready for editing. That’s the easier genre for me to go after this year.

One of the most important parts of the plan, for me, was the last point – the timeline. If I’m going to be writing more or less ‘full-time’ then I need a way to hold myself accountable. It’s too easy to let yourself off the hook. You are your own boss – you need to know when to crack the whip.

In addition to the strategic plan, I had to think about three other things. 
      ·         What was I willing to sacrifice to make this happen? Whether that’s a winter vacation or a weekly latte – I know there will be a time that I need to go ‘without’.
·         What’s the contingency plan? I have transferable skills and used to run my own consulting business. I am starting now to put the word out that I’d be looking for some freelance work to supplement my meager literary income.
·         And finally – who will be my support team? This may be family, friends, fellow writing colleagues. It’s important to have people to reach out to when you begin to doubt yourself. These are the people who will make you leave your office for a coffee, and just as likely to remind you to get back to the job of writing and get off of Facebook. 

Having thought about all of this, doesn’t make the decision any easier. There are still plenty of days when I wonder what the heck I was thinking, but you can’t let yourself or others talk you out of your dreams. If you want something, you have to go after it, and trust that, to paraphrase the poet Max Ehrmann, the world will continue to unfold as it should. At least that’s what I keep telling myself.

About Zoë Mullins

Zoë is an Atlantic Canadian author of contemporary, historical and paranormal romance. After two decades of working in corporate communications, Zoë decided to refocus on the kind of writing she loved – steaming hot romances with strong, independent heroines.  When not at her desk or with her laptop in the gazebo, you can find her at her spending time with her husband (of nearly 20 years) and their three K9 fur-babies. Zoë has had two books published over the last year – Winning Cait and the latest Tempting Sophie, as well as a novella A Risk Worth Taking. 

Zoë’s latest novel, Tempting Sophie, is an erotic romance. Though definitely meant for those 18 and older, Zoë believes that even the sexiest scene has to move along the plot or reveal something about the characters. In Tempting Sophie, we have a woman who felt like there was very little in her life that she was in control of except her sexuality, then cancer threatened even that. She retreated into herself and pushed away the people, the man, who loved her. The story explores what those who love her are willing to do to get her back.   

If you want to learn more about Zoë and her works, check her out at:

Twitter: @zoe_writer 

Buy Links:
Barnes & Noble


  1. That's a tough decision, to give up the day job--I haven't been able to do that yet. Good luck to you!