(Goodreads “Q & A” Session – 07 May 2020 1305 EDT)
Put It In Your Toolbox
(1) Silence your internal critic – Writers
allegedly possess a unique tendency to inadvertently become their own worse enemies in the blink of an eye. Think about it, how many times have you established a solid workflow that was thwarted by thoughts of not being “good enough?” In complete transparency, I’ve rewritten this sentence four times and double-checked the Merriam-Webster dictionary to verify that the hyphen truly belongs between the words double and checked (sigh). Allow those insecurities to fuel self-confidence and real swagger. My college coach always said, “Don’t allow perfection to stop progression.” On second thought, that mantra could have originated with someone else. Regardless, it makes perfect sense, right?
(2) Get ready to work – If you believe that all challenges cease when the on-screen cursor has typed its final period, think again. From an independent publishing perspective, I quickly discovered that establishing an end goal is equally important as finding the motivation to begin writing. Trust me on this one, create a list and start brainstorming. Are you expecting monetary compensation? Perhaps fame is the game. Or, maybe sharing your creative streak with the world tops the list. Be prepared to explore marketing tools (ie., Google Analytics, literary blogs, etc.) based upon the final objective. Next, begin a casual cyber snooping campaign and loosely observe how other authors have (insert your goal here). Most writers are eager to share advertising tidbits or methods that will navigate newbies in the right direction. Know where you’re headed and do the work to get there.
(3) Have fun – Look, I get it. As a former professional basketball player, I’m the last person to push the “have fun” agenda. However, it is imperative that you find pleasure, excitement and wonder during the journey. Why? Because the destination is rarely as spiritually moving as the effort to sit and write after a long day or during your little one’s soccer game. Don’t take yourself too seriously, it isn’t worth the heavy burden that becomes affixed to your creative pursuit!