With another final under Treasured Claim’s belt, my debut has now finaled five times in three contests for published books. So today seems like a good time to touch upon the contest arena for published books.
Writers are often a neurotic, self-doubting lot, and many of us hope for validation as a means of overcoming that doubt. We never want to think about how that validation is only temporary, but the best we can do is try to create a healthy relationship with our validation desires.
Whenever we send our work out into the world for feedback, we’re taking a risk. Depending on our levels of self-doubt, the feedback might roll off our back, inspire us to work harder and fix issues, or convince us that we should quit writing. How can we avoid destructive feedback and the temptation to quit?
Sometimes as authors, we struggle to create a well-rounded world or characters that feel so real to readers that they experience a movie in their mind. Stories that feel like we can crawl in and inhabit them are often lauded as special, but why is it so hard to succeed in that goal?
The journey to writing is filled with many obstacles, yet something keeps us going. Maybe if we understand what’s been most helpful for us becoming and/or remaining a writer—not including writing skill—we’ll be better prepared to face our obstacles now and into the future.
As writers, we face deadlines and commitments every time we turn around. So we’re likely to be familiar with the pressure of deadlines and the expectation of meeting our commitments. But what happens when we can’t meet them? How bad is it for us and our reputation?
Last Friday, Angela Quarles’s book Must Love Chainmail was named a finalist in RWA’s RITA award, and my writing bestie’s success reminded me of an important lesson for all of us. The road to success can look an awful lot like chaos. *smile*
Everyone has an ego, a sense of how they fit into the world. In the publishing world, that “everyone” includes the newbie writer and the multi-published NYT bestseller, the professionals of traditional publishing and self-publishing. Sometimes egos are healthy and helpful for getting things done. Other times…not so much.
I’ve spoken many times about our learning curve as writers. Not only can it seem endless, but we can also be skilled at one aspect and unskilled in another. So at what point can we stop thinking of ourselves as beginning writers? When will we be “qualified” for the advanced stuff?