by Cindy Wong
It all started one summer day when I was 12, and I ran out of books to read. With no internet and no access to the library, I decided to write the books I would have wanted to read.
I never thought I would be a writer, let alone become a publisher or a bookseller, but my world has always revolved around words and writers, and writing books appeared to be the most natural thing to do.
Not everyone loves the idea of reading. The world is too busy to grab a book and spend time reading. So why do I invest my time, energy, and money when there’s no guarantee that someone will buy and read my work?
Finding a purpose for writing requires digging into one’s soul. Like many other writers, the process I had to go through had a hundred kinds of frustration. I’d be lying if I said I never thought of giving up.
In fact, I gave up thousands of times, but I keep going back to the path that satisfies every fiber of my being, and that is writing.
Aside from one’s attachment to writing, I also got to know other writers. Writing with other people means sharing your deepest thoughts and secrets that even you didn’t know existed.
So, there I was, writing stories, collaborating with other writers, and even building my own publishing company, 8Letters Bookstore & Publishing. I sold books and wrote some more. The next thing I knew, I’ve been a writer for two decades already. I enjoyed what I did so much, I didn’t even notice the time that passed!
And here on Bookbed, I will be sharing my journey as a writer and publisher. Welcome to A Writer’s Life!
I’ve been writing, and also running 8Letters remotely. My 8Letters team is in the Philippines, while I worked from Hong Kong then, and now Russia.
Constant communication, common goals, patience, determination, aspiration—all these are some of the things you’ll need, and it can be both easy and challenging.
Easy because you don’t have to take or spend on any transportation to communicate with your team. Difficult only because I wish I’m the one packing the books. (I had this long-time dream of becoming a librarian where all books shall pass through my hands.)
Some of us in my team are already working, while others are still in university, so we all work on our passion in our free time. But it all works out. My team and I would meet twice or thrice a year, usually during workshops and book fairs pre-pandemic, and now via online, where we get down to work as if there was no distance between us.
All these prove we can do anything—as long as you have a computer and an internet connection! And yes, we can even run an empire. (8Letters isn’t an empire yet, but who knows!)
Anything to share? :)