Thursday, April 8, 2010

Celebrate the Small Successes

Writing is a tough profession. Not only do we have to face the gauntlet of getting that book through agents and editors but if we make it that far, we have to now deal with the marketing aspects, promotion, book signings, reviews and so forth. This is simply not an easy profession.

One thing that can make this a bit easier though is to celebrate the small successes. Each day with our writing, we can find something that we can add to our list of "way to go's!"

I know I mentioned this before, but the Silicon Valley RWA chapter does a great thing. Before every meeting they celebrate the small and large successes. Everyone is eager to cheer on writers as they make their announcements:
  • "I wrote THE END!"
  • "I sent my project out to an editor/agent!"
  • "I entered my first contest!"

Sure there are those that celebrate their first releases and their newest book, but I am always excited when I hear those prior small victories. But when I say, small, I have to say, these are hardly small victories. For these writers, they had to over come a lot just to get to this point. They had to finally suck it up enough to put that manuscript in an envelope and send it out, knowing the odds were just as a good for a rejection as they are for an interest in more. They knew that entering that contest might mean comments that say it is awful. Still they did it.

It would be great if every day we could have one of those amazing things to cheer about. My book just hit a new best seller list. I just sold 1 million copies. I just made a 6 figure deal. But it might not. What keeps us going is finding those small victories.

As you write the rest of this week and on into next week, I want you all to do me a favor. Before typing at that computer, set yourself a small goal - and then achieve it!

We can't win everything, but we can win some of the small battles. Enjoy the ride and relish that feeling of making some progress.



  1. Good to read. Sometimes it's easy to forget that the small successes add up. As a beginning writer, I've read a lot already about the mountain of rejections that are probably ahead of me. Your post this morning reminded me to try to enjoy the steps along the way because each of them is worthy of recognition.

  2. I've been a wanna-be for years. If it wasn't for you and your posts I would still be "wanting" and not DOING.

    I count every typed word as a huge success.

    Thanks for the reminder.

  3. Thanks for this, Scott. I'm really struggling with self-confidence right now, and I need to remember that all of the hours I've spent getting to this point are not wasted.

  4. I entered my first two contests a couple of months ago and just found out I made the finals. Yes, it's a small success and I'm grinning, but I know there's a long road ahead.

    Karen is right. Every typed word is a huge success.

    I enjoy your blog. :)

  5. I love your blog. I thank you for all the advice I have received by reading it. I have four celebrated "THE ENDS", and three celebrations of "I'm Getting There." Now one day I expect a celebration of "YES I MADE IT" the hardest to grasp, yet to the easiest to expect. I will be there one day and I will have many Manuscripts waiting. I can hardly wait!

  6. Your post this morning reminded me to try to enjoy the steps along the way because each of them is worthy of recognition.
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