Today I finally dropped my baby boy off at daycare for his first full day. I meant to do so months ago, but circumstances had other ideas.
But every time I got frustrated with my lack of work time, I’d snuggle my baby in my arms and remember this post I wrote back when my now-four-year-old was the baby in my arms. The gist:
Cuddle your baby while you can. They don’t stay babies long.
The point is, all of my recent publishing progress, logo work, book editing, etc. has been squeezed into nights and weekends. I don’t say this for a pity party. I say this to remind you (and myself) that, as sure as the baby phase is fleeting, the dream that fuels your heart is timeless. Challenges and circumstances may come and go, but don’t worry. Dreams persist.
My dream still persists.
The dream that began with Sue. The dream that began here…
In this week’s installment of book progress: building a beta reader dream team.
What is a beta reader? A person who reads a book before publication and offers feedback. Although beta readers can be professional editors or writers, they don’t need to be. More importantly…
Pick someone who is:
1. Interested in your project, whether as a friend, spouse, cause supporter, beneficiary, mentor, teacher, etc.
2. Brutally honest. You don’t need “yes men” who will pat you on the back and withhold valid critique. You need people you can trust to rip your manuscript to shreds, if need be. If they don’t do the ripping, I can guarantee you that less supportive readers will. Continue reading
My husband introduced me to this phrase. His step-father (that’s him to the left) used to tell him, “Do something, even if it’s wrong.” And that confounded him as a kid.
As ridiculous as it might seem at first (of course, you shouldn’t do horrible mean things just for the sake of doing them–that would make you an awful human being), the advice has a sort of sage-like brilliance.
Most of us come to discover, over a lifetime of trial and error, that you can’t wait for the stars to align perfectly to pursue your goals. If you ever actually want to reach those goals, you need to take matters into your own hands. And maybe your hands are messy. Or too full. Or you feel like you have no clue what you’re doing. Or sometimes you even wonder what’s the point anyway…
But the goal keeps coming back. It lingers, prodding you with unsuspected nudges, until finally you relent. “Okay, fine. I’ll just do something already!”
Case in point…
How do you prioritize between outside needs and internal inspiration?
Well, to start with, you need to get back to the basics of the word need.
For instance for the past three years, on top of my monetary and motherly contributions to my family, I felt I needed to blog 2-3 times a week, all for a possible audience of future books.
The one problem with that?
This baby is officially due Wednesday—if I haven’t had it already. You see, you’re reading this today, but I’m writing it a week early… just in case.
I wanted to let you to know that I’m going away for a little while, at least digitally.
You’ll still see the occasional updates from me on Facebook, Google+, and Twitter, of course, but the blog is going to
“Goldfinch” © Chickens in the Trees, Flickr Creative Commons
It’s not often that I recommend a book so unilaterally. Frankly, I don’t recommend most books I enjoy because they’re usually too far in the realm of classic on the one end or fantasy on the other.
Not true with The Goldfinch by Donna Tartt. Whether you’re man or woman, adventure lover or philosopher, page skimmer or word obsessor, it’s well worth your time.
In truth, what kept me reading was the mystery of the story. But what made it unforgettable? What so compelled me to share it? Continue reading