When people ask me how I manage to make a living doing what I do, I give them one piece of advice: Know the problem you’re solving for. You need to have a vision for your writing career. Once you’re clear about what you want to accomplish, things will begin to fall into place.
If your goal is simply to write a book, you can take the necessary steps to do that. Set aside time every day to lay down word count. Attend workshops, read books, and do writing exercises that will help you develop the skills you need. When your goal is to self-publish, you’ll focus your attention on the business side of things, and learn all about editing, layout, cover design, and distribution. Should your goal be to win awards, you might do research on the sorts of books that win or insinuate yourself into the right cliques (I have a low opinion on most awards; a post on this topic is forthcoming).
That doesn’t mean it’s going to be easy. But when you have a vision for your writing career, you at least have some direction. You know what success will look like. This acts as a filter for opportunities. If something will bring you closer to fulfilling your vision, do it. If it seems like a tangent, and not a step forward on your intended journey, pass it up.
Have a Vision for Your Writing Career
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