"Sixty new publishing contracts." - two-book deals, five-figure advances by authors with huge platforms
"Borders Bankruptcy Coming" - bankrutpcy - always a happy topic
"ABC Launches Video E-books" - Seriously, ABC? Plus, I'm just grasping the variety of regular e-books, and you throw a video version at me?
"Blackberry Playbook Tablet Appears to be a Dud" - I didn't know Blackberry had a tablet.
I feel like I'm standing on a subway platform as the train rushes by - everyone on board a serious writer while I'm a wannabe trying to catch a few ideas as the train flies past.
We can become distraught from the changes, successes, failures, innovations and theories. Forecasts drive me crazy, and I skip those because they are just one person's predictions. Since we are in unusual times, who the heck can predict with accuracy?
Go to a conference, for instance, and you walk away either rejuvenated or demoralized at all the new information. Faculty members tell you all the "musts" you should be doing, or provide ideas that should be added to your to-do list. This person tells you to Tweet. Another says it's not worth it. One tells you how to do well self-publishing, while another says traditional is still the professional way to go. When you're sitting on the fence on all these topics, how do you decide?
What to do?
- SET A SHORT-TERM GOAL - Set a goal for your writing. What do you wish to accomplish at the end of the month, six months, then a year.
- SET A LONG-TERM GOAL - If you have been writing for a few years, establish one-year, two-year and three-year goals.
- SET TIME FOR PERSONAL DEVELOPMENT - Allow yourself a fixed amount of time for personal development, research and study so the vast supply of stories, press releases, blog posts and idioms don't drive you friggin crazy. Like email, all this self-improvement info can take over your writing life.
- SET TIME FOR SOCIAL NETWORKING - Posting or reading, limit yourself.
- READ IN YOUR GENRE - Example is usually the better teacher than how-to material.
- WRITE. Sometimes we forget why we care about all this information. Remember your real purpose - to write.
Spend time reading and writing. Attend the occasional conference. Read the occasional writer's magazine or blog. But when reading about writing takes up more time than the writing itself, you become a wanna-be who most likely never-will-be.