“Sometimes I think that planning is way overrated,” says Albion, Indiana author Mark Hunter. “You could argue that I’d be more successful by now if I’d planned more.”
Planning might have helped Hunter’s writing career but it also might have kept him from writing his most successful books.
“I’m spreading out my energy,” he says. “I’m spreading out my audience but I’m loving it. I’m loving the writing part… I may not be loving the income.”
Hunter’s an outlier among writers, he doesn’t write one kind of book. His first success, ‘Storm Chaser’, is a boy-meets-girl romantic comedy. His next big success, ‘Smokey Days and Sleepless Nights’, a history of the Albion Fire Department and Hunter’s days as a firefighter. His next work, ‘Hoosier Hysterical’ is a humorous look at events in Indiana history.
“I had a whole chapter where I made fun of the Klan,” he says. “You gotta be able to make fun of the Klan, I mean come on!”
And Hunter’s latest book, ‘Radio Red’, another departure...a romantic mystery about sabotage at a small town Michigan radio station. Science fiction, history, humor, young adult mystery...Mark Hunter dabbles in all the genres though publishers say that’s bad...it keeps writers from building an audience. Hunter says he’s okay with that.
“With the money that the average writer makes you might as well do what you enjoy,” he says, “because you’re not doing it for the money. There’s lots of easier ways to make money.”
Hunter’s been writing for forty years but published his first book just six years ago after marrying his wife Emily. He’s since published eight more books and credits Emily, his editor, for much of that success. And though he can’t quit his day job and write full time just yet, that is definitely in the plan for this author without a plan.
“As far as getting published I’m having a lot of success,” he says. “As far as making a living at it that’s gonna be a while yet before that happens. But I’m working on it.”