Keep Going With Your Writing
From my years in publishing, I've learned there are many different routes to success. As a writer, my task is to keep going and continue pursuing my dreams. Your persistence and continued effort will pay off. It's a message that I've given in my workshops—but one I've been hearing from others as well.
The road to success is littered with people who do not persist. These writers try a few things, get rejected then put their writing away and figure it no one wanted it. In contrast, the writers who get published continue to look for the right place for their material to be published. They are persistent.
One of the best stories about persistence is Jack Canfield and Mark Victor Hansen when they were trying to get the first Chicken Soup for the Soul book published. Their book idea was rejected over 140 times. Now that is a lot of rejection and persistence! In the process of their search for a publisher, they lost their literary agent and even considered self-publishing until a little publisher in Florida offered to publish the first of numerous books. Many writers would have given up on their book but Canfield and Hansen persisted. Today Chicken Soup for the Soul is one of the best-selling series of books but it certainly didn't begin that way.
If you are struggling to get published with one idea or manuscript, I encourage you to write a second book proposal or manuscript and try that one. Maybe the second one will be where you will find success. I've known many novelists who never published their first novel—and their manuscript remains in their desk drawer. Instead they needed to persist and write and market several novels before they found their writing voice and path to publication.
Or maybe you need to try a different type of writing such as publishing in print magazines. It is necessary to experiment in many different directions to find your path to publication. For the last year, each month, I've been writing an article about different aspects of magazine publication. Check this link and you will see that I've written many different articles about this key writing skill. From my experience there are many different writing possibilities. I have a wide-ranging list of some of these possibilities in the free sample chapter of my Jumpstart Your Publishing Dreams (just follow this link to download it).
Several months ago, I told about listening to a story in Lauren Graham's memoir, Talking As Fast As I Can. She was at a cast dinner and seated next to mega-bestselling author James Patterson. She asked him, “How do you do it?” He responded, “Keep going, keep going, keep going.”
One of the hardest things to discover is something which is not there. This principle applies to proofreading, writing, marketing and many other aspects of publishing. When I read Coker's article, I began to think about #2 Add a Discussion Guide. Years ago when I was an acquisitions editor at David C. Cook, we decided to add a discussion guide into every new book—nonfiction or fiction. Why?
Because it was a simple addition which added value to every book. There are thousands of book clubs selecting books to read and discuss every month. If your book includes a study guide, then you have opened this possibility for your book. If your book is already in print, then you can write the study guide then give it away on your website as an added value for your readers. You can use the study guide as a list builder and have people give you an email and first name to get the free download—or you can simply give it away.
It is key to explore new ideas and to take action.
What new ideas are you exploring and trying for your writing—so that you keep going? Tell us in the comments below.
How do you keep going with your writing—even when rejected? Here's some encouraging ideas. (ClickToTweet)
Labels: book proposal, Jack Canfield, Jumpstart Your Publishing Dreams, Mark Coker, Mark Victor Hansen, novelist, persist, persistence, Publishers Weekly, publishing, writer