Friday, January 12, 2018

Storyteller's Journey

Photo Credit: Public Domain
Redeeming the Time

When I began writing full time, ten years ago, I realized quite quickly the importance of managing my time. I set up a schedule of writing, blogging, social networking, reading, etc. I knew that to be an author would take more than just "putting pen to paper." In addition to that, since writing is a solitary activity, it was important that I keep disciplined & busy - the way I had for so many years in my healthcare profession.

In the last three years (since having my books published) my time has become even more scheduled. No one tells you that once you're a published author additional demands will be placed upon you. Some of these necessary activities further your career as an author, while others, even though well-meaning, merely serve to steal your time.

How can we, as full-time authors, make the most of our time?

This might sound a bit bizarre, but for me, listening to my intuition is key. The further I go along my journey, the more I realize that every writer's path to publication is unique. Attend any SCBWI (Society of Children's Book Writers & Illustrators) workshop, retreat, or conference, and you will be sure to hear all sorts of amazing accounts from talented authors as to how they finally received representation from a literary agent, or had their book published independently.

Some wait twenty years before landing a book deal.
Some are published soon after completing their manuscript.
Some get published traditionally; some independently.
Some have a degree that pertains to their writing; some do not.
Some have known their entire lives they want to be an author.
Some, like me, found their calling after years in a previous profession.

My point is, there is no one road map along the path to publication. Consequently, the choices we make each day might seem strange to another writer. That's why I rely so much on my intuition. I learned many years ago, the hard way, that not to trust my gut was unwise.

And, whether you write in the morning, or write in the afternoon, or write in the middle of the night, stay on a schedule. Then, once you're published, make sure you're strong enough to say "no" when you must.
Guarding your creative time - and the time with your family & friends - is the only way to be happy, productive, and successful as an author.

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