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Posts by Cedar Sanderson

The Day Job and the Creative

As most of you know, I have a ‘day’ job. The writer/artist/whatever else I am is all on the side of my primary career. This is not because I am secretly yearning to quit my day job, flip desks, and storm off into the sunset to make my way as a full time creative. Rather the other way around, as a matter of fact. I was a full time creative. And then I went back to school, graduated with a BS, and started working toward my dream job. I got it, too. I’ve been a Scientist for a year now, since I accepted the new role at my lab in 2018. (Blinks. A whole year? Dang)

But wait, you might be thinking, you’ve got a good income, you’ve achieved a life goal… Why are you still writing? Well, because I started writing thinking two things: one, I was in college at the time and any money was good money. Two, I was planning on writing being my retirement income. Something you should know before you launch off the deep end into self-employment. There is no such thing as retirement in the way most people talk about it, and there is certainly no handy retirement investment funds that your employer contributes toward (pats her tiny matched fund on the head. You grow up a bit, now). Self-employment is fantastic for freedom and flexibility. It’s not so great for consistent reliable income. After having spent most of my adult life running a micro-business, I knew that the only way I was going to avoid being a burden on society as an old lady was to build something to support myself in my old age. Hence, starting to write. Read more

Witches Float

I’ve been slowly reading my way through an excellent book on psychology. One of the studies the author discusses in detail is what should be done for survivors of some mass disaster or trauma. Oddly, the answer seems to be: don’t force them to relive it. People are surprisingly resilient, it turns out. And forcing them to talk about what happened in an effort to prevent PTSD turns out to actually make the problem worse. If you leave them alone, people will recover, come to terms, and when they need it, seek help. This isn’t always true… some people are not resilient at all. They shatter under pressure. I can give you examples of both, in the writing world, from the past week.  Read more

Noise

The human factor in art is noise. When you are taking a photograph, the noise is the graininess, the imperfection that when you blow the photo up large enough to see the details, the details erode into static. When a scientist runs a baseline on a chromatograph, the baseline isn’t smooth. If you zoom in far enough, you see jagged peaks and valleys that mean nothing when compared with the actual signal of a substance being analyzed. That’s noise. Read more

Writing Postures

About 8 months ago now, my husband and I were very excited to buy a home, one that was big enough to house the children. We had been searching for the perfect house for months, had put an offer in on another house that fell through when the inspection revealed fatal flaws in the old place… but this one was all shiny and newly renovated and the only minor flaw was that it didn’t have a fourth bedroom to use as office/guest bedroom. No problem, I thought. I’ll make the dining room into my office. We can put the First Reader in our (very large) master bedroom so he has the quiet he needs, but I’ll be out in the public spaces so the kids stop invading our bedroom all the time to talk to me.

Right. So that was a tactical error, as I am certain any parents reading along have already realized. But then, I compounded it. Read more

Rookie Writer, Seeking Publisher

There’s something about admitting in public that you’re a writer. People are either weirded out by it, or fascinated. I’ve made some interesting connections over the years talking about being an Indie Publisher, and I always try to help when asked honest questions. Years ago when I was newly fledged and all my feathers were still wet and pathetic, so many people helped me. Dave and Sarah, Amanda, and many others who aren’t here at the MGC too. I can’t possibly repay them for what they did for me. So what I do now is try to pass it along to others. In this instance, the person asking me for help has a demanding (to put it mildly) day job. In their shoes, I’m not sure I’d consider indie, either, and while it might sound here on the blog like I’m militantly anti-publisher, that’s not actually the case. Really, what I am is militantly independent. Period. Not just in business. Read more

IDGaF

Here’s why you should. I see it frequently, if not hear it outright, and although there are times the ability to not GaF is a powerful tool, there are definitely times it is a bad thing. When you get to the point where you stop seeing the people around you as humans, but inanimate objects who are simply obstacles to overcome, you need to GaF. As an author, not giving a damn about readers will get your book outright mocked, if you don’t do everything right. So I decided I needed to make a case against the modern philosophy of IDGaF. It’s self-centered, and self-defeating, when it comes to Indie Publishing. Or trad pub, for that matter. Read more

Ars Longa (Repost)

This originally appeared on my blog as part of a series. You can find all of them here. This seemed appropriate here, as well, and I’m dealing with some stuff that makes my writing a little… fuzzier  than usual. More on that later. I have no answers, and as I wrote a while back, humans need answers.

Ars longa, vita brevis, occasio praeceps, experimentum periculosum, iudicium difficile

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