It seems like every day on social media there is a person (or people) sharing a story about how someone criticized them for something they chose to do that didn't hurt anyone. It could be something as simple as binge-watching Downton Abbey instead of cleaning the house. Yep. I've done it. But that's just it. Why should we feel guilty about it? I don't feel guilty about the TV programs I watch, the movies I enjoy, or the music I listen to because they're my choices. So I'm going to share some of my not-so-guilty pleasures with you today, and I encourage you to let go of the feelings of guilt and just be you!
I had never heard this song until I was watching an episode of When Calls the Heart, and this song played for the promo of a much-anticipated wedding between the two main characters. Immediately, I fell in love, and I felt inspired. Inspired not just to write but to return to romance. I always include some romance in my books, but this song made me want to write the type of romance I used to write, the in-depth, all or nothing type of love that makes your heart beat fast. And I'm going to follow my new inspiration! I hope you enjoy the song as much as I do!
Whether you’re just beginning this journey toward publication or you’ve been on the road for what seems like forever, the last thing you want is yet another “don’t give up” speech. Maybe you’ve already grown weary of rejections and requests to review, especially when those only result in yet another rejection. Only a few months in to your writing career (or maybe longer), you don’t see a light at the end of the tunnel. That’s why I’m writing to tell you to give up.
I’m sure that caught your attention. Here I am instructing you to give up when everything you read tells you to keep going. All over the internet, people tell you that is a marathon not a sprint and that giving up isn’t an option. I could tell you that, too, but you already know that. It’s time you gave up a few things if you’re going to continue down the path to publication.
1. Give up your time table. Many times I’ve heard “I thought I’d be published by now” or “why is it taking so long to get an agent”. Did you know there is no time clock on publication? It doesn’t matter if you get your first book contract at age thirty, forty, or beyond. So stop worrying about the time it’s taking you to get published. It will happen if you keep trying.
2. Give up your compelling need to be just like (insert well-known author’s name). Every author has his/her own path. That means you can’t expect to follow in anyone’s footsteps. There is no keeping up with the Joneses on the way to publication.
3. Give up the doubts. With every rejection, it’s easy to doubt your talent, but I promise you, this is a subjective business. One publisher’s rejection is another publisher’s bestseller. So one closed door isn’t the end of your journey; it’s just a detour.
4. Give up the bitterness. You want to be published, to see your work in print, and with each success of those around you, envy takes root. The more you feed it, the more likely you’ll become mired in bitterness. Instead, be happy when a fellow author gets a contract. That means publishers are still acquiring. An author reaching the New York Times Bestseller List is a reason to rejoice because it means readers are still buying!
5. And finally, give up the thought of giving up. If you want this dream to become reality, you have to work for it. Forget the past and forge ahead. Remember that you’re the only one who knows how many rejections you’ve received and how long it’s taken you to get that first book contract. And that will all fade away when you’re published.
So enjoy this journey. Keep learning and growing to prepare yourself for the success coming your way. There’s room in this publishing world for all of us!
Originally written for The Engrafted Word
My heroines live among wizards, witches, vampires, and ghosts. They travel to the far reaches of the world looking for shamans, to an ancient English castle to interview brooding Dukes, and to Paris, Italy, and Spain to fall in love.
In the midst of bloody battles, they fight alongside their own hero. They are fiercely protective of the man they love yet they don’t lose sight of their own hopes and dreams. And they find their happily ever afters.
None of my heroines have it easy because life just doesn’t work that way. If they really want love, they have to work for it and work to keep it. They suffer heartache, betrayal, and loss, but, in the end, their sacrifices are rewarded.
They explore magic with a wizard when they never believed in wizards. Find immortality with a vampire when vampires aren’t supposed to exist. Or they discover love after death in an ethereal realm.
In the fantasy worlds where my heroines live, they see beyond reality, and that sight brings with it unique destinations, rare encounters with mystical creatures, and the ability to exist outside the boundaries of a normal world that is boring and predictable.
So if I had a choice of performing mundane tasks like paying bills and putting gas in my car or seeing the galaxy up close and personal, why wouldn’t I choose to live without limits?
Unfortunately, I can’t realistically experience life as one of the heroines in my books, but I can sure live vicariously through them. Now you know why I love to write.
My thoughts, experiences, challenges, and goals. Right here. At least once a week or so. Oh, and opinions, too. Those will definitely come in. Join me!