Besides last weeks, “Study,” another thing writers should do is read. They should go hand in hand. Read and study, study and read.
Do not become caught up in the proper/conventional methods of study. Read, re-read, and yes reread again! Read for approach, read for character development. Read for plot. Read.
Heard recently at a writers question and answer session at a writing festival, find groups of people who will be honest with you and you with them. Read each other’s work.
Now, go find something good to read!
That is my mantra of late. Not just for my current semester of course work, but in general. Study.
It is taking longer than I wanted to put out the next book. There is a lesson in that. Patience. Something I have too little of for my own good. However, all this study has been a boon.
There is a calming aspect to realizing that you were on to something when you made a change and choose what has been in your heart, and accepted yourself. As much as I would have liked to say, I wasn’t a writer. I am. It has been a hard part of myself to accept.
I didn’t think I was smart enough. I didn’t think I had anything to say, or tell that anyone would be interested in reading. ‘I didn’t think’, really means I didn’t believe in myself.
Believing in yourself means accepting who you are and liking you, as you are. The sooner you do that, the better it all becomes. Can I get an amen on that?
I am amused at the reaction from others when they ask what I am doing. Some are surprised that I am still writing. Others make a point of being encouraging and are sincerely supportive. Thanks to both!
Writing is a business. All the statistics that apply to starting a business, apply to becoming a writer. It can take years. Failing before you succeed is common as well.
Even though I have outlined a basic plan, most people don’t really care. They ask, and forget. I do that, too. (Ask people questions, listen with genuine interest and then promptly forget their answer.) We’re all so busy it is unreasonable to expect anyone to remember, unless it directly pertains to them. If they have remembered, it is a special treat; I feel honored.
In a perfect world, my expectation is to publish three books a year. At this rate, it is looking like one every other year. In the future, maybe someday in the future what I can realistically accomplish will work itself out to an average; something between three and none.
All the stories about rejection and eventual success remind me that it isn’t about how much I finish. Quitting is one of the biggest obstacle for most; for me it seems to be unrealistic timeframe. “Better not faster” is a hard motto to remember.
Once upon a time, I went to public high school. There was a young man, just a few years younger than me. He would enter the building shortly after my arrival many mornings my senior year. Our principal in passing would greet him, “Hello Mr. Fosko!”
Years and much living later, our acquaintance remade itself. This time, we became friends. He became my friend first, because that was Joey.
He encouraged me to write because it is my first love. Joey loved sports and was a sports writer. It is impossible to express the importance he placed on following your passion.
Doggedly I would throw reasons at him about why I could not be a writer, even though we both knew I wanted to be what I am.
- I am a bad writer. – Write, you will get better.
- I don’t want to sign a contract and self publishing is a long shot. – There is always next year, look at the Cubs.
- I don’t have a degree. – He would point out that he didn’t finish college either.
I love writing. It is what I do, and who I am. Joey, thank you.
You love Me
sulk with sad eyes
pleading Me to stay
as I dress to leave
I love You
I leave You
again and again
You meet my return
Nails hitting linoleum
Behind the door
Beating the rhythm
This poem was written for a college English assignment. My fur babies –
I didn’t get to go to the Junque Jamboree as planned. Overslept and work up late to a dark sky and thunder. The weather cleared up late morning, by then my husband had convinced me to take the day off.
Early September, an opportunity to participate in an Art in the Park event was really fun, until it rained. That packed me up early. So, with all the wet weather it became obvious, I need a tent!
Yes, part of the marketing of self published books includes actually going out to sell the book. No, not something that comes easily for me. Book sales and signings are probably the largest stumbling block for me.
I have shied away from the opportunity to do book signings. In some cases downright refused. Why? Because I am scared.
Maybe scared isn’t the right word, terrified, frightened. It isn’t a comfortable feeling. You might call it stage fright. Definitely something I am working on, so if you see me out, please, say ‘Hi!’
I want to thank those who have bought a copy of Snowball.