Why You Can’t Afford an Editor

Writing is an awfully expensive journey, isn’t it? Let’s keep it uber real here today, friend. Honest with each other over a cup of my favorite peach tea. The author’s road is a hard one. Been there, got the t-shirt.

Your laptop is not exactly cheap. Add to that a word processing program, office supplies, craft books, writing courses/coaching, conference fees (often $500+ per conference), and editing costs (quality editors charge in the thousands for this time-intensive venture). If you’re an indie or self-published author, you’re also footing the bill for proofreading, formatting, cover design (which can be hundreds of dollars), ISBN numbers, and the list goes on. That’s not even counting the countless hours, blood, sweat, and tears that go into putting out even one novel.

It’s not cheap. I get that.

And it shouldn’t be.

Stories change lives. They change your readers’ lives. And, let’s face it, writing powerful stories changes your life, too. Sometimes even more than your readers. 

Yet, you’re still telling yourself a very disturbing story. You’ve already invested a tremendous amount of time and energy – and your heart, to be honest – into your story. You may have already invested financial resources into your writing as well.

But you’re still telling yourself the same misleading story. “I can’t afford an editor. Or a writing coach. Or to go to that conference. Or to buy that craft book.”

I. Can’t.

Do you hear yourself?

Why are you telling yourself you can’t do it? Why are you telling yourself such a misleading narrative? I’m going to get real honest with you, sister, and I want you to get really gut-level honest with yourself. You can’t…or you won’t?

Most of the time when we say we “can’t” do something, we actually mean we’re not willing to make the sacrifices necessary, to do whatever it takes, to make it happen. 

It’s not about the numbers. The dollar signs. The financial cost. Really, it’s not. It doesn’t matter if it’s $50, $500, $5,000 or even $5, the root hesitation is the same. It’s about believing you are worth the investment. That investing in your personal growth, your writing journey, is worth the sacrifice.

I know what you’re saying. “Katie, you haven’t seen my bank account.” No, I haven’t. But I have been in the position of not knowing where my next meal is coming from. Of sitting on the floor, leaning against the fridge, and crying because I didn’t have the money to pay my bills that month.

And God has always been faithful to provide.

A couple months ago, I strongly felt that I needed to invest in a business coaching program to show me how to wisely steward this profession I firmly believe he has called me into. But I’d just gotten married. I live(d) in a tiny studio apartment. I was still paying off debt, so I didn’t want to gain any more. My husband had gone through three job transitions and worked 2-3 jobs for almost six months just to make the bills.

Let’s be real. We were broke newlyweds.

I kept telling myself that defeating narrative. “I can’t afford to spend thousands of dollars on a business coaching program. There’s no way.” 

Then, I listened to a webinar challenging me to change my “I can’t” attitude to “What can I do to make this happen?” I had assumed it wasn’t possible, so I hadn’t even bothered to ask God to specifically provide or run the numbers.

To my shock, the money was there. I could pay that amount to the government in taxes, or I could reinvest it in my business. My business actually could afford it. Barely. Not comfortably. But what had seemed impossible just an hour or two previous could now become a reality.

But I still wasn’t sure. Even if I could make it happen, should I?

So, I prayed. I asked God to provide the funds in the next 24 hours (before the early-bird pricing for the course closed) if He wanted me to invest in my personal and business growth. And I put out a special offer combining my services and charged the exact amount of the course.

You know what happened. A couple hours later, a previous client took my offer. 

I paid for the coaching program out of pocket. I saved thousands of dollars in taxes. And I’m already seeing tremendous breakthrough in my mindset and business savvy in just the first week of the course!

Now, you might be thinking, “That’s nice for you, but I can’t just wish money into existence (even if it does, technically, grow on trees).”

I agree.

It takes much more than wishing. It takes intentional action. It takes a commitment to invest in yourself and your writing career. It takes long-term vision, out-of-the-box problem solving and a willingness to do what it takes to make the impossible your reality.

Did you know the average American spends over $1,000 a year on coffee? And nearly that amount just on Christmas gifts or Halloween candy? How much have you spent this year just in late fees? Create a plan. Be intentional. Make it happen.

Are you ready to change your “I can’t” into “What can I do to make this happen?” Are you willing to tell yourself a different narrative, yell “plot twist,” and change the direction of your story?

Yeah? So am I. Let’s take this journey together.

4 Comments Add yours

  1. Michele Israel Harper says:

    This is lovely! Thank you for your encouraging words!

    1. Aw, thanks Michele! I needed those encouraging words today!

  2. Sometimes people say I can’t when they mean, I wont. It takes sacrifice to not stop for that coffee, or not buy an extra pair of boots (hey, they’re 75 percent off), or sit down write, edit and submit instead of binge watching Stranger Things. Not easy, but always worth it! Thanks for encouraging us to have an “I can” (and “I will”) mindset.

    1. Absolutely! I find that self-discipline just as hard as anyone else, but it definitely adds up and pays off. Love your heart and so glad it was encouraging to you!

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