Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Can I Get a Light?

How do you keep your torch lit?

How do you keep the fire alive while you're striving to reach your goals? Eventually, everyone's fire starts to flicker, sputter, die.

How do you keep it burning throughout an entire year? Throughout a lifetime?

What keeps you going when the winds of rejection and self doubt are blowing?

Hear are a few things that can help :)

Spark #1: Purpose!

Many of us talk about being born a writer, or meant to do what we're doing. Regardless of whether you believe in a higher power, think about what you love, and what you are hard-wired to hope for. You have a purpose. So get crackin' fulfilling it, already! No one can stand in your way if you believe you can do it and work your butt off to make it happen.

Spark #2: We're ahead of the Game!

We know better than to do things that make agents crazy, so we're already a step ahead!

For instance, we know that if we use the phrase "fiction novel" in our query, it's akin to squirting a cat in the eye with a water pistol and then asking that cat to pretty please represent us. We also know that if we send loose tea bags in our query letters, agents will only think of our swine-flu covered hands groping said tea bags and those 500 prison inmate weirdos who sent them tea bags that week with sexual puns and photos included. We know that is not the first impression we want to make.

If you don't know what irritates or enrages agents, take a look at Janet Reid's blog, under the tag "Annoy Me" for a quick education. Trust me. You'll be glad you did :).

Knowing is half the battle!

Spark # 3: The Success of Those Who Came Before!

Tell me reading about folks like Jamie Ford, author of THE HOTEL ON THE CORNER OF BITTER AND SWEET, doesn't make your typing fingers itch with excitement? Reading debut authors' success stories is like stepping into an alternate universe where your secret Hopes and Dreams have become a reality, and you get to watch as they unfold. SQUEE!

Sure, it won't happen for you that way, but someday, it will happen. And you'll get to tell people your story! And hear them squee for you!

So, what keeps you guys going?

What lights a fire under you when things get dark?


Scott said...

Margaritas, and plenty of them. Kidding. I'm pretty much of the thought process that what happens, happens when it is meant to happen, and not a moment sooner. So, a rejection by an agent (while soul crushing . . . well, not totally) just means that said agent wasn't the right agent for me, and right agent is still out there waiting for my fabulous query. No, haven't been hitting the margaritas . . . that only happens on Friday nights. : )

I think it's all about perspective, having a goal, and a bit of patience thrown in for good measure.


coffeelvnmom said...

I also think that surrounding ourselves with fellow writers makes a big difference. I live in a small town with not a whole lot of writers, but the internet has been a great tool to keep me in touch with people out there in the same boat. Knowing we're not the only ones feeling frustrated or down or whatever helps keep the flame going too! =)

Christine Fonseca said...

I agree with both Scott and Coffeelvnmom...perspective, goals and supportive friends are th key!

Rebecca Knight said...

Scott: Do margaritas help with patience? That's what I want to know ;).

Coffeelvnmom & Christine: I totally agree that writer friends make all the difference :).

Iapetus999 said...

I sacrifice a small lamb. Or kid. (or are those the same?)

Seriously, I start drinking heavily.

Rebecca Knight said...

I think a kid is a baby goat, but that works, too!

The drinking part made me laugh out loud. I think whiskey is part of the Writer's Toolkit ;).

Anonymous said...

Necessita una luz?

That means I need a light in Spanish! =D

I def. agree with all of this, it gets rough and your right all of our research and blogging networks pay off!

We just need to make our writing to take us to the final step and when it does we'll SQUEE, which I LOVE doing for people I know via blogs/networks. It's the coolest thing ever to know someone!

Oh and I will SO super SQUEE for you girlie! =D

Anonymous said...
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Rebecca Knight said...

Awwww, Sara :3. That made my day!

Nishant said...

, having a goal, and a bit of patience thrown in for good measure.

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