Stay Upbeat or Get Beat Up

It’s so easy to see why many writers simply give up on their dreams of getting their work in print: lots of hard work, excessive amounts of patience and no guarantee that it will ever go anywhere. It doesn’t seem like an easy road to success. Even if you are lucky enough to get published, there is still marketing and promotional work to be done and even that doesn’t ensure that your story will make it to the big time.

Yup, pretty easy to understand why people give up.

Let’s dwell on the negative for just a little longer before we put it behind us.

If I’m any example of the typical writer at all, there are many other things to contend with. I’m NOT patient, I’m NOT entirely confident that my writing is good enough and I AM shy. If that were all I was, I would have walked away from this whole writing thing long ago.

It’s the other things that burn more  brightly that keep us moving forward. For me, writing is an integral part of my life. I took part in an interview for the Writing Show a while back and I was asked how writing has changed my life. It really got me thinking. I realized that writing has actually changed the way I both see and think about things. It has given me a different perspective.

That’s just the beginning.

Even if I never become wealthy from my writing, I want to experience the heady rush of seeing my work in print. Perhaps my books will never sit on the shelf of a bookstore, but what if they do? Wouldn’t it be cool to proudly point at the book and be able to say “I wrote that”? It’s a dream that I keep in the forefront of my mind at all times. It’s what gets me through those periods where I question my own sanity.

And what of that self-confidence thing? I know established writers who still wake up in the middle of the night wondering if their latest work will be good enough. What chance do I have? Simply put, I have to build on my successes. For example, my YA novel has now had two publishers request a full manuscript for review. The last rejection was because the publisher was focusing on an ‘older’ YA audience, not because there was something wrong with the story. I’ve got to believe that it will one day see print. If two publishers have liked it, so will others.

I read one of my short stories as a special podcast episode. I didn’t get any comments that said it was aweful. I did get some where people said they liked it. That should mean that my writing is already at a certain level of polish.

And I guess, what it really comes down to is, I like telling stories. I have characters and plot ideas that are clamouring to get out.

So, I’m stuck with writing and trying to get my writing published. There are no two ways about it. I’ll just have to continue being positive about my chances and move forward. I hope you’re able to do the same.

Personal Update

Yesterday I found an extremely interesting contest for a YA novel. As it happens, I have a YA novel that I think (and as mentioned above, others agree) is pretty good. Maybe it has a chance. The prize is a publishing contract. That alone is worth sending it out.

Editing on the fantasy novel is proceeding well and I’m certain I will be finished by my self-imposed deadline of October 31. I’m also gearing up for NanoWriMo.  Care to join me?


One comment

  1. Aweful? Nobody said it was ‘full of awe’ and you were made glad? 😉

    Critique is one of the scariest things in the world, both giving and receiving. If someone is abrupt enough to say “Ha, U sux!” we disregard them, more times than not.

    I ask myself constantly if I think I’ve done enough work to even entertain the notion that my words are good enough for someone to pay money for the privilege of reading them. Same is true of a painter who puts a $1000 sticker beside his painting.

    If you’re not good enough, and you care, you get good enough, and you find out what went wrong, and you suck it up and you fix it, no matter how much it hurts.

    And I’m right there with you for Nano, as always. Hope to see you at an actual meet this year. 😉

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