Tag Archive - discouragement

Redefining Success in Order to Stay Sane

Have you ever asked: “What on earth possessed me to want to be a novelist?” Are you starting to realize this journey of being an author is not a short sprint but a marathon—and often a grueling one at that?

When you hear of the numbers of novels submitted to agents and publishers each year (in the six figures), you sometimes think winning the lottery offers better odds than getting traditionally published. But then . . . you finally break through and get a contract, and months later are holding your brand-new brilliant release in your hand, feeling like you’ve finally arrived.

Not Even Fifteen Minutes of Fame . . .

Yet . . . if you’re like me, the flashbulb moment of that exhilaration lasts a very short time, only to turn into something akin to another stark, depressing realization—that the odds your book will become a huge hit or best seller is . . . well, about the same odds as winning the lottery, and you’re back to the same place (or almost the same place emotionally) as you were when you first starting sending out your first queries to agents. Continue Reading…

Embracing the Boulder of Discouragement

I would like to propose that discouragement is a good thing. Excuse me? Who in their right mind would think of discouragement as a blessing? Or a benefit in any way? Sure, dealing with discouragement can make us patient and long-suffering. It can help us toughen our skin so that as more disappointment or rejection hits, the blows won’t hurt as much. Why look for the good in something so negative? And what does discouragement have to do with the craft of writing?

We’ve all heard the admonitions to persist in our writing, to fend off discouragement, to plow ahead with our calling. And that’s what we do—knowing that if we have been “called” to write, we need to be faithful to that calling or risk that empty feeling that comes from curtailing or denying our creativity. Oftentimes, writing is a joy—easy, flowing, inspired. But other times it’s a real struggle to keep at it. Maybe you feel like we’ve been over and over this subject, for I’ve run numerous posts on this topic. But this is a plague among writers, and I keep witnessing this discouragement popping its ugly head up among my clients and writer friends.  Continue Reading…

Is the Drive for Success Stealing Your Joy?

To continue with the exploration of success and motivation, I’ve asked a therapist to share some thoughts on this topic. Today’s guest post is from my author friend and client Rita Shulte. Rita is a therapist who has some great insights about success and finding joy in our vocations. I asked her to write something for Writing for Life that would encourage and help writers to thrive in their writing journey.

 

As writers we all want to be a success. We want to have our words touch people’s hearts; we want to somehow be immortalized through our work, and at the end of the day we want to sell books. That seems pretty normal—but percolating under the unconscious surface, could there be deeper reasons that being a success is so important to us? And, is the drive to “make it” stealing our joy? Continue Reading…

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