Along the same lines, I am also a person that if there is an opportunity for me to make a difference, or to be a part of something, I will make every effort to be there. This includes voting, participating in a survey or simply giving my input. And, the time factor comes into play here as well. I will not wait until the last minute to jump into the mess. I will be there from the start.
As I got up this morning to get the day started, a comment my wife uses in her classes came to mind. She is always telling her students something Woody Allen once said: "80% of life is showing up." For many authors, the simple reason they are not published is that they simply are not showing up. These are authors that will tell you they are working on a book, but when you see them a year later, they are likely on to the next project with the other one still incomplete, or they are still working on the same one.
If you want to be a professional writer, you have to show up. You have to be there every day when you wake up in the morning. You have to commit to the the game and stick to it. There can be no excuses.
So what does this involve? Write every day. Attend conferences. Submit queries when you are ready to be published. Read and research the business daily. Invest in memberships to writing groups. Work with critique partners. Blah, blah, blah.
I know you ahve heard this, but I thought I would bring this up for several of you writers out there.
- If you did the Novel In A Month program, are you going to be finished today, or is there a "reason" why you aren't finished?
- If you had a request from an editor or agent, have you sent that project in?
- If you have "looked at membership" in an organization, have you sent the check yet to get going?
- If you have a story idea, are you working on the outline or that chapter today?
- If you have wanted to get an editor or agent to your writing group, have you called them, or is it on your "to do" list for today?
I can go on with this but I think you get the idea. No more excuses. Don't just say you will do it. Just do it! I have told students in the past that I don't want to hear that they will do better, just prove it to me. I dare you!