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 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!