Don’t Give Up

English: Stephen King signature.
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Don’t Give Up

Traci Kenworth

 

Don’t give up, not even when pigs fly. This writing life we do takes guts, determination, and faith in yourself even when there is no hope in sight. It’s hard to hold on when the rejections keep coming in, the phone call doesn’t happen, your book doesn’t rest in your hands either in paperback or on a kindle/nook etc. When we start off in this business, stars in our eyes, we often don’t see the big picture. The years of hard work, of starving for some sign that we’re headed in the right direction. It can get gloomy, depressing.

That’s when you have to dig your heels in. Or realize that your dream of being a published writer just isn’t something you want to pursue any longer. Chances are though, if you’ve stuck with it through the hard, lean times, you’ll see it through to the glory. Now that doesn’t mean you may one day see your name in lights. For some writers, just having their work out there for others to read is the real, “I’ve made it.”

There comes a point in your writing when you have to decide what you’re really in this for? Fame? Fortune? Bringing the reader to your pages? Personally, I’d rather do the latter. Fame and fortune (heck success on the level of J.K. Rowling or Stephen King) would be nice and I’ll take them if they come but more often than not, we have to figure if we want our stories told, read, loved or just piled in the closet somewhere. I think that’s why there are so many indie writers. Self-publishing is a way to realize the dream within the dream.

Not that I’m saying to count traditional out. It just seems harder and harder to break into that market these days. Right now, I’m looking into e-zines for my short stories. A way, a reward, to keep my eye on what I really want: to tell stories, to touch readers with those stories, and at the end of the day to walk away satisfied. So part of the struggle is done for me. I no longer measure myself by how far I’ve come, by being part of the big leagues. No, what matters is the story, and getting better with each one. Satisfying the reader is the ticket to this game.  It’s the way, the journey to being a successful writer.

So, how about you? Do you consider where you are at this point, if you’re where you want to be? Is this really more of a hobby for you so the questions don’t apply? Are you sticking to your guns and absolutely will not give up till you go the traditional publishing route? Are you happy being self-published? I think the answers are important to keep us on the right path, or maybe to change that path a bit.

Don’t ever give up, no matter what comes your way. Sometimes it’s just the dream that has to change a little. Compromise.  (Speaking from a the stand point of someone who writes fiction:) We’re all in the business of stories, aren’t we? Can’t we be happy with whatever success we find? Because I’m pretty sure once we accept one piece of the publishing standard, another will follow, and then another until it propels us to where we want to be. I may not be where I want to be, but I’m doing exactly what I should be doing at this point: improving.

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8 thoughts on “Don’t Give Up

  1. I have gone round and round with myself over the past couple of years. Do I really want this? How badly do I want this? How much longer am I willing to keep trying? But I really can’t stop writing. I love it too much. And that’s how I know I’m on the right track.

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    1. Great advice, Melody!! It truly is hard to know if you’re on the right path or not, but getting that deep down grit determination in ourselves will help us persevere in times when your heart cries out that nothing you write matters. And when we get that faith and keep it, doors begin to open. Doors that can lead us to where we’ve only dreamed. Thanks for reading!!

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  2. My first goal is to be traditionally published. I’m not sure if I’m reading for self publishing yet. But once I’m ready to take that step, I’ve got friends (successful friends) who can guide me. 😀

    I’m not a short story type person, so I haven’t written any. It’s something I might consider doing between novels as a form of promotion for the next book (if I write a series).

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    1. There are a lot of different paths to getting our stories in our readers’ paths, the important thing is not to give up while doing so. It’s so easy to get too close to the flames and get “burned.” I’m not sure I’m ready to deal with the whole shebang that goes into self-publishing either (in fact, I know I’m not), but it is a possibility, so is e-pubbing. I just think getting a taste of publication in any format will fuel us onto the next level where we can shine.

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  3. I actually want to be trad published, but at this stage, with the markets being how they are, I will publish in any way possible to get my book out to the largest possible number of readers. 🙂

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  4. Self-pubbing is definitely tempting and I may look there if the traditional market doesn’t happen. But I think for me, designing everything and being responsible for every little detail would drive me crazy. However, with the advancements being made by ibooks, who knows?

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