So it seems have reached a turning point in my life again.
In December 2014, I took stock of my year, and I made a 2015 resolution to secure a THIRD book deal in a genre I had not yet been able to pin down – FICTION.
Well… I’ve done it!! I’ve secured said book contract for not only one book of fiction – but an entire TRILOGY! Come 2017, I will be the proud author of a new Young Adult Fantasy Trilogy set in Singapore, and inspired by Malay/Javanese/Straits Chinese mythology and magic.
What this means is that I will have FOUR books to write between 2016 and 2018, since I had earlier secured a second book contract – a coffee table book on Singapore’s heritage – with my existing publisher. I have also begun sending out proposals for the follow-up to The Romance of the Grand Tour, this will be a sequel called Travels in the Far East, and featuring the treaty ports of China and Japan (earlier featured on this very blog); and given my track record, I am hopeful of securing my SIXTH book deal.
And so slowly but surely, my dream of being a writer full-time is coming to fruition. In order to write all these books, I have opted to go part-time at my workplace for a few month, and take no-pay leave for a couple more – all with the blessings of my organisation.
But ultimately, I wonder if I should not just take the plunge and leave my job in order to write, at least for a few years. I certainly feel strongly the urge to do so. And I am worried that I will not be able to write to my best ability with the job as a distraction.
It’s a tough one. The bills, of course, need paying – I do have to think pragmatically. There’s also the matter of my professional career in the museum – would that still be there if I’m gone for a year or two?
There’s no right answer to this one. And that’s why, I suppose, I’m at a TURNING POINT.
TURNING POINTS are crossroads – points in one’s life where one has to make a hard decision whether to trundle along like one has always done on one’s present path and in one’s comfort zone; or to cast aside everything that one knows and is familiar with, and dive into unfamiliar territory with firmness and ferocity, not knowing what may happen, and ignoring what everybody else might have to say about the matter. [Hey, it’s my life, after all!]
TURNING POINTS are risky – one could take flight, or plunge to the depths. And there’s no turning back either way.
But that, I suppose, is what life is all about. You have to make the hard decisions; you have to get past the cross-roads, the turning points – all the time knowing that there’s no turning back – in order to take flight.
And I have decided that for this year and the next, TAKING FLIGHT is exactly what I intend to do – whatever the form that may take.
Wish me luck on my journey.