Wednesday, June 30, 2021

15 Foundational Truths of a Resilient Writer


by Edie Melson @EdieMelson

There is only one constant in the publishing industry—constant change. 

As soon as we think we’ve hit on the formula for success, the variables shift and we’re back to square one. It can set us up for a life of frustration if we’re not ready for it. 

That’s what today’s post is about. I want you to have the tools and resources you need to set yourself up for success in an uncertain environment.

15 Foundational Truths
1. These sudden shifts are an opportunity, instead of a liability. For example, if the bottom drops out of the genre you’re writing with traditional publishers, look at the opportunities with smaller houses or self publishing.

2. We can use setbacks as a chance to deepen our knowledge of that particular subject. Early on in my career I had a Bible study rejected simply because I had no platform. I took that as an opportunity to learn to grow my online platform.

3. When faced with rejection, turn it upside down. When I first started as a freelance writer, I knew that if I received a certain number of rejections every month, then I would get a certain number of acceptances. So I made my goal each month to reach a specific number of rejections. 

4. Rejoice when others are successful. Sometimes that’s hard to do when things aren’t going our way, but when we can move past being resentful of another’s success, we’re able to cultivate contentment and resiliency.

5. Don't give weight to those negative voices in our heads. We say things to ourselves that we wouldn’t allow someone to say to our worst enemies. All writers have those negative whispers. The successful ones know how to ignore them.

6. Promote others who write the same things as you. It sounds counterintuitive, but I’ve built my platform by promoting others ahead of myself. 

7. Learn that comparison is a deadly trap to be avoided at all costs. There are always going to be people ahead of us, behind us, and right beside us. We all have different gifts and God has a different—special—plan for us all. Comparison isn’t accurate and it can be deadly.

8. There truly is plenty of work to go around. We work for a big God and He has plans for this gift He’s given us.

9. Talent will often provide the push to begin writing, but it won’t fuel the journey. Talent is a wonderful thing, but it’s not a necessary thing. Persistence is what carries you through the tough times.

10. Never stop learning. This publishing thing we’re all doing is a journey. There isn’t an end destination. Every level we achieve just leads to another climb ahead. And those climbs can’t be done without additional knowledge. 

11. We cannot do this alone. We all need friends and colleagues on this writing journey. They give us perspective, encouragement and the occasional kick-in-the-pants we all need.

12. Remember the WHY to get through the HOW. When difficult times come, it’s the why that will carry us through. Write down why you write. Post it above your desk and let it remind you when things get tough.

13. We’re not responsible for the results, only the work. We can’t guarantee ourselves publication at any particular time or with any particular company. What we can do is write with excellence. If we do that, publication will follow.  

14. We live in one of the best times ever to be a writer. It’s easy to look at all the changes and general chaos as nothing but negative. The truth is though, we can reach more people through our words than ever before. And anyone who wants to reach the world through words needs a writer to help them. 

15. Prayer changes things. As Bob Hostetler and Lucinda Secrest McDowell have reminded us in previous posts, always pray before you write.

These are the things I’ve found that have made me a resilient writer. What would you add to the list? Be sure to leave your thoughts in the comments section below.

Don’t forget to join the conversation!
Blessings,
Edie

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Edie Melson is a woman of faith with ink-stained fingers observing life through the lens of her camera. No matter whether she’s talking to writers, entrepreneurs, or readers, her first advice is always “Find your voice, live your story.” As an author, blogger, and speaker she’s encouraged and challenged audiences across the country and around the world. Her numerous books reflect her passion to help others develop the strength of their God-given gifts and apply them to their lives.Connect with her on her website, through FacebookTwitter and on Instagram

20 comments:

  1. Pray for all the people that will touch your book in every stage of publication - ahead of time. That way you know it is doing some good, no matter how long the process. :)

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  2. Edie,

    From my decades in publishing, I resonated with each of these truths. The challenge for each of us is to incorporate these truths into our heart for action rather than just knowing it in our heads. Thankfully the journey of a lifetime begins with a single step.

    Terry
    author of 10 Publishing Myths, Insights Every Author Needs to Succeed

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  3. I did so enjoy this blog. Numbers 5 and 7 spoke to me. Thank you, Edie.

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    1. Diane, I'm so glad you enjoyed this post! Blessings, E

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  4. #12 spoke to me, Edie. Thank you for a wonderful post. A few reminded me I'm on the right track.

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    1. Ane, you are such an example to sooooo many of us! Thank you! E

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  5. What a great list for us no matter where we are on the journey. I would expand #6 a bit. Promoting others who write the same things as us is a definite "yes." I also like to promote friends I've met in writers' groups, conferences, or online even if they write in a different genre. It's so fun to post, "Hey, my friend wrote this -- check it out!" You might help connect them with one of their biggest fans. :-)

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  6. Great read, Edie! And I would add for us older ones - become knowledgeable with all phases of social media, the internet, blogging, etc. That is where it all is! Thanks, Edie, always, for your help and sharing these posts.

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    1. Diane, very true! Thanks for sharing, Blessings, E

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  7. I hate to say it, but #15 convicted me. So often, I sit down to write, and my goal is to meet my goal for the day. I might "meet" it, but without prayer, it's an empty goal. I want to finish a section when God wants me to spend time in Scripture on the basic truth that underlines that section. When my words grow out of God's Word, they meet His goal - to bless others.

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    1. Sherry, I'm guilty of this too. Blessings, E

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  8. Thank you for this great list, Edie. #9 and #15 resonate with me. Persistence and prayer.

    I would add one more foundational truth: It's not all about me. It's about Him.

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    1. Oh Kay! That's so true! Thanks for sharing, Blessings, E

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  9. Every one of these points is powerful and valid. Thank you!

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  10. Such great reminders, Edie. Thank you! Am printing to save for when I need to hear them again!

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  11. Hi Edie,

    These are great reminders! I’m on my honeymoon right now, but I know I’m going back to writing when I return.. Even though I run into all these things even with academic writing… it’s a great reminder in and of itself to remember not to be a negative Nellie about it! Thanks again Edie! Very timely as always.

    Blessings,
    Laurie Lupin

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  12. Thank you, Edie, for this fantastic reminder to keep on going in the writing world. I'm bookmarking your post. Blessings!

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