Thursday, June 25, 2015

Focus On The Joy

As I've been experiencing some ups and downs with getting my words in and accomplishing my goals, I found this old pep talk from Brandon Sanderson.  In it he talks about how he was pretty much in despair, wondering where and if his writing career would ever take off. He had a huge stack of unsold novels and no sales/deals in sight.What he didn't know is that in a few months an editor would read the book he'd submitted a year earlier and his life would change.  But what if he'd given up?

But here's what he said that struck me:

"You could be writing the book that changes your life. You could have already submitted it, or self-published it. The spark could be starting a fire for you as well. You don’t know, and you can’t know. That is the thrill of being an artist, of working for yourself, and of telling the stories you want to tell.

Don’t give up. Keep your eyes on the project you’re working on right now, and make it the best that it can be. More importantly, love that process."

I do love the thrill of being an artist and sharing my stories.  And some days I do love the process, but more often than not, I slog through it.  Reading this little pep talk today reminded me of the joy I've felt when I've finished a story, shared it with a friend, or read a good review.  

And that's what I want to keep in the forefront of my mind.  I think I'm going to write "Love the Process" on a recipe card and tack it up on the wall where I can see it every day.  Somehow, when I read that, I'm reminded of how much I DO love the process.

Focus on the joy. That's what I'm working on.

(You can read the full pep talk by Brandon Sanderson here.)


Jon Spell said...

I find Brandon's word both uplifting and discouraging at the same time. When I can't (apparently!) finish a single novel and he had like ELEVEN before his first one got published. I mean, he's a prolific (and high quality) beast now, but at my current rate, having eleven books collecting dust would take me about the length of the Millennium.

Julie Coulter Bellon said...

Yeah, I know what you mean. For me, I like his idea of just enjoying the process, since that's what I'm having trouble with right now. If I think about having that many manuscripts, it's too much! Babysteps, right? :)