Recently, a friend posted about 10 lessons she learned from her first week as a full-time writer. Unashamed, I snagged her idea. Thanks, MD.
1. Act like a writer. This means even if you can’t afford to attend big writing conferences, make an effort to connect with other writers. How? One of my favorite ways to feel like a writer is to go hear an author speak locally. Granted this is easy for me because I live in a place that pops with creativity. However, authors also show up at local malls, and let’s be real, book signings don’t always have big lines or smashing turnouts, so authors are actually happy to see interested peeps.
2. Share good news and update readers on your offline writing. I signed with an agent. Yes, I did. It was a few weeks ago. I think I spoke to her for twenty minutes without breathing once. In fact, now that I replay it, I’m pretty sure our conversation was a fairly one-sided stream of nonstop babble. In the end, I pitched three book ideas, broke every rule you are supposed to follow when an agent calls, and I might have said, “I love you”. I’m hoping that last part just happened in my head.
3. Take a bath. If you don’t feel like a bath, take a shower. The best ideas come when you quit forcing them, and that brings us to the next point.
4. Force your ideas out. Write, even when you don’t feel like it.
*I realize the last two points contradict each other. Doesn’t matter, both true.
5. Answer yes. When people ask you if you write, do not go on some rambling tangent (see lesson two) just answer yes. I'm still working on this, still working.
6. Set imaginary deadlines for yourself and meet them. Right now, I’m writing a proposal for a new book. I will have that bad boy finished next week. Period. What happens if I don’t? Nothing, but I’m going to do it anyway.
7. Realize idea to draft to book is a long process and even if you have a brilliant idea and work your boo-tay-tay off, if may not happen. Enough said.
8. Write about something you love. I have been writing about serving others as a family for almost two years. Two years. Glad I happen to love this topic otherwise I’d be crazy.
9. Be content even if the only place you publish is on a blog. I used to think if I held a book in my hand with my name typed (in a super fabulous font) on the cover, I’d be content with my writing efforts. I know this isn’t true. Why? It’s the same reason I thought if I ate one double stuffed Oreo I’d be happy. It sounds good, tastes great, but I always want more. Contentment needs to be found right where you are standing.
10. Get out and appreciate the rainbows. Earlier tonight, I forced myself to go for a walk. I didn’t want to because the kids were in bed, and it was quiet, and I usually get thirty-three minutes a day for writing (exaggerating, but not by much). Anyway, out I went, and guess what I saw? The biggest, fattest, brightest rainbow arched right over my head. Don't forget to participate in life.
Are there any lessons you are learning as you chase those wild dreams of yours?: :
Linking with SDG.