Wednesday, May 22, 2019

A Writer’s Danger Zone

by DiAnn Mills @DiAnnMills

A writer who slips into complacency enters a danger zone guaranteed to threaten a successful career. One of the biggest pitfalls in a writer’s life is a sense of self-regard that eliminates a dedication to growing in the craft. Add a false belief that previous publications, contracts, and name recognition will continue to soar with the writer investing little input.

Continued publishing credits mean writers cannot stop the flow of hard work. The constant challenge of quality writing is as critical as the inspiration motivating us to write. 

Writers who ignore the warning signs of pride may blame the market, the publishing house, the agent—anyone but themselves. They lose passion in their writing and boredom marches in. A good kick in the seat of the pants might shake reality into place, but why take a step into the danger zone called complacency?

Please take a look at the following 10 ways to ensure complacency doesn’t happen to us.
  1. Avoid burnout to stay enthusiastic about our writing. If we work 7 days a week from early morning until late at night, the thrill escapes us.
  2. Celebrate life. If we accept life is all about writing and nothing else, we become dull by missing the excitement of the world’s beauty and adventure.
  3. Creativity is not just for writing, marketing, and promotion. We need other interests that appease our creative spirit.
  4. Develop friendships who aren’t writers or readers. Our relationships can stagnate when we are super-focused on only bookish buddies.
  5. Enlist an accountability partner. Reaching a goal is no fun if we don’t have someone to keep us on track or share in the achievements.
  6. Establish writing values or revisit our mission statement. What is the most important reason we are in this business?
  7. Evaluate our past writing projects. Are they our best, or are we allowing limited time and hurried efforts to rob readers of our most excellent work?
  8. Schedule daily time to grow in the craft and marketplace. We will never have all the answers to changes surfacing in the publishing industry, but we can commit to learning a little every day.
  9. Stay in touch with other writers. Be active in an online or face to face group.
  10. Take risks and try something new. A different type of writing project or an innovative method of marketing and promotion provides enthusiasm that can spur us on.  

How do you avoid the danger zone of complacency in your writing? 

Beware of a writer's danger zone - tips from @DiAnnMills on @EdieMelson (Click to Tweet)

10 Tips to stay out of the writer's danger zone from @DiAnnMills on @EdieMelson (Click to Tweet)

DiAnn Mills is a bestselling author who believes her readers should expect an adventure. Her titles have appeared on the CBA and ECPA bestseller lists; won two Christy Awards; and been finalists for the RITA, Daphne Du Maurier, Inspirational Readers’ Choice, and Carol award contests. Firewall, the first book in her Houston: FBI series, was listed by Library Journal as one of the best Christian Fiction books of 2014.

DiAnn is a founding board member of the American Christian Fiction Writers, a member of Advanced Writers and Speakers Association, Suspense Sister, and International Thriller Writers. She is co-director of The Blue Ridge Mountain Christian Writers Conference and The Author Roadmap with social media specialist Edie Melson. She teaches writing workshops around the country.

DiAnn is very active online and would love to connect with readers on Facebook:, Twitter: or any of the social media platforms listed at

1 comment:

  1. Great post, DiAnn.
    Pride is not only a terrible sin but also an obstacle to our growth as writers.