Have you had a long, hard week of writing? Things not going so well? Maybe you need a little bit of a nudge, or a hug? I think as writers we should all be supporting and encouraging each other, so in that spirit, I’m going to devote today’s post to some cheerleading. I’ll start at the first seedling and go to the finished project and beyond, so there’s something for you no matter where you are on your journey:
- Do you have writer’s block? Take heart, it will pass. We all get stuck sometimes. What you might need most is to give your brain a rest, or focus on something else.
- Are you struggling through the first draft? Keep struggling! Each word you put down gets you closer to a finished manuscript, even if the words come slow.
- Stuck in the middle? Try a few different doors, even one you wouldn’t normally consider. It just might show you the way forward.
- Agonizing over the end? Maybe you can write several endings and see which one works best. Remember that nothing is set in stone at this stage.
- Groaning over edits and rewrites? Take it one little bite at time. Don’t overwhelm yourself. Looking too far ahead makes you trip over what’s under your feet.
- Not sure if your rewritten/edited manuscript is right yet? Set it aside and come back to it with fresh eyes later. It will still be there.
- Nervous because you’re about to query? It’s okay to be nervous and anxious. Do some research on where you’re sending it. Polish your letter. Make sure you have everything ready to go. Breathe. Hit send.
- Waiting to hear back from an editor/agent? Get to work on another project so you’ll have something to distract you and you won’t be pulling your hair out as much.
- Rejection? It hurts, but it’s part of the writing game. Don’t give up. Keep trying.
- Acceptance? You may be running around in frantic circles. Celebrate! Congratulations!
- Is your editor making your life difficult? Try to look at the criticism and corrections with an objective eye and ask yourself what you can learn. Don’t take it personally, because it’s not.
- Waiting for your book to come out? Focus on marketing and what you can do in the future to promote it. That might help the days from going by so slowly.
- Your book just came out? Congratulations, breathe a little!
- You got bad a review? Remember that reviews–good or bad–are one person’s opinion. Your book isn’t you and they’re not attacking you personally. Nod and move on.
- Your book isn’t selling well? Take heart, only a comparative handful of writers are lucky enough to make a real living off writing. Give yourself career goals and work toward them. You might just end up in that handful.
- Worrying you’re a hack? We all feel that way sometimes. You’re not a hack. Hold your chin up and look to the future–you will get better and better with time!
No matter where you are on your writing path, I hope today finds you well. May your words be abundant and clever, your ideas bottomless, and your readers plenty! If you have other words of encouragement for each other, leave them in the comments!