Wednesday, April 20, 2016

5 Ways to Become An Action-Taker

Many of us have dreams and desires for success in the publishing world. We want to have people read our books and write material that is read and appreciated.  Almost every day I'm speaking or emailing people who hold this dream. About 83% of Americans plan to write a book during their lifetime and many people have written a manuscript but can't seem to figure out how to move forward with it.

From my years in this business, I want to give you concrete and practical steps you can take to become an action taker and move forward with your dreams. I define an action-taker as someone who does more than dream but takes daily action to move toward making those desires a reality.

1. Create a specific goal and write it down. If your goal is not written, then it will be hard to achieve it. You can write it in a notebook or in a little card that you carry and look at from time to time.

2. Break this goal into action steps that you can take to achieve it. Maybe your goal is to start a blog on a consistent basis.  People are amazed at the volume of content in The Writing Life—over 1300 entries. The volume comes from consistently taking action and adding to the content. I also have a lot of information about blogging in this free teleseminar on the topic (follow the link).

3. Commit to moving on toward that goal every day. Some goals like a book manuscript or a book proposal take time and can't be created overnight but can be done with consistent effort. The old saying, “Inch by inch it is a cinch” is true. If you decide to write a page or two every day, then you will be able to keep your momentum going and complete each of the parts of a book proposal or a book manuscript. Getting your ideas down on paper is one of the first steps to completing the project—but it will take consistent action and effort to get it done. I've done and you can do it too. Use my free Book Proposal Check List to guide you in this process. Also make sure you check out the various resources and links to other information on this one-page document.

4. Seize unexpected opportunities.  In the past, I've written about the need for every writer to respond to their emails and phone calls—which is the essence of good customer service. Anyone connected to publishing is in the communication business. Admittedly communication doesn't often happen so if you communicate, you will stand out in a positive way. 

Last week Julie Eason sent a short email asking if I was available to participate in her Business Book Summit and could she interview me right away. I did not hesitate but said yes and scheduled a time to be interviewed. The summit begins next week in a couple of days and is free. I'm grateful to be able to talk about book proposals and Morgan James among such a great line up of speakers. Yes, Julie asked me—but I read my email, said yes and scheduled the interview. Unexpected opportunities will come to you as well. Are you taking action? 

5. Face Your Set Backs or challenges and keep on moving forward. Everyone has bumps in the road. These bumps could be a personal or family crisis or something with your work or even a technical challenge with your computer or software or ???? These challenges happen to all of us including me. The key is what are you doing to get through the roadblock or challenge. From my experience, there is a way through your challenge. Don't ignore them but take action and work your way through them. 

Often I read about someone who is an “overnight” success. They have suddenly skyrocketed on to the national front through a book or a YouTube video or a media outlet. Yet if you carefully examine the life of that “overnight” success you will learn (as I have) the person has been faithfully in the trenches and taking action. Many people tout the best-selling success of Chicken Soup for the Soul by Jack Canfield and Mark Victor Hansen.  Throughout the first year of this series, each author followed the “Rule of Five.” It is a stellar example for each of us. 


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