Saturday, May 08, 2010


There are lots of motivators in life. Some people claim sex is the great motivator. Others think that a good beating is a proper motivator. Many feel that a guilt trip does the job. When I was in junior high and high school, I found that returning violence in a greater sum than received was was the way to get it done.

The thing is, there are all kinds of motivators for each situation.

I've found that poverty and fear of poverty were always the motivator that kept me working, or kept me busy looking for work. And, of course, I always had my dreams. A dream can serve that purpose, as long as you don't allow anyone to crush it. There are people who--just as Frank Sinatra said in one of his famous tunes--get a kick out stompin' on a dream. I've always done a fair job of keeping other people from stomping on my particular dreams. Mainly, that meant keeping those people out of my life. I never hesitated to shed unwanted company, no matter who they were.

My biggest dreams were always kind of selfish, I have to admit. These dreams involved my writing and the goals that I had for that side of my artwork. From the first time I wrote a short story at the age of eight I wanted to be good enough to make money creating fiction. From time to time I've done that. Never enough to make it my livelihood, but always enough to keep the dreams fed. Sometimes it was enough for them to have a cookie, and sometimes it was room and board for several months. Enough to keep 'em alive and kickin'.

Today I signed the contracts for a two-book deal with a major New York publisher, Tor Books. This was seeing one of my dreams become reality. I had the help of an excellent agent (Robert Fleck), and the eye of a good editor (Jim Frenkel). They've helped give my dream life.

If that ain't a motivator, I don't know what is.

Signing the Tor Books contracts and doing my best to behave.


Jack said...

Congratulations Bob! Looking foward to when you can quit that job with the USPS and get out hiking more often!

HemlockMan said...

Thanks, Jack! You don't know how bad I want to be able to quit my regular job and write full time! (Well, write when I'm not hiking and camping.) But I know too many writers who thought they were about to hit the big time, quit their jobs, and ended up on the skids. It'll unfortunately take lots more than I've currently made to make that happen. But I have hope that it will happen.

dogboy443 said...

How bad was your hand shaking???

Lawrence Roy said...

Indeed, congratulations. Are these two books the ones to finish your *Flock* trilogy or is there something else going on?

HemlockMan said...

Mark: Hand was rock steady. Butterflies in the stomach, though.

Roy: First book in the deal is actually THE FLOCK itself. The second book is a sequel, THE CLAN. They have first refusal option on a third book, THE TRIBE. I even sent my agent notes for a possible fourth book called THE RACE...we'll see how that goes.