Thursday, April 28, 2011

Your writing holds the key

I've been working on my presentation for the "Framing Your Dream" class at LitFest this Saturday, revising my outline and narrowing down what needs to be said in my 30 minutes of talking, and I've realized a very important truth: everything begins and ends with the written work.

What you write and who you write for is where your passion lies. That passion is what will get you published. Nothing else matters, not the dreams of big contracts and pots of money, not the networking or the conferences you attend or the books on writing you read. Nothing is more important than the actual writing you do.

If you are not madly in love with what you write, then no one else will be either. If you're just writing to get published, then why should anyone care about what you're writing? You may as well just write a 300 page advertisement that shouts, "Look at me! See how great I am? I wrote a whole book!"


Your writing is your guide through the conferences, networking opportunities, query letters, pitches, websites, blogs, and eventual publication. The type of writing you do and who you write for will help determine the best route to being published. Everything else is just elbow grease... important, yes, but not the most important.

So look at what you write. Are you madly in love with it? Does it keep you up at night, sing to you in the shower, interrupt your thoughts at work? If it doesn't, then why are you writing?

And then look at your publishing dreams. Are you writing the type of book that can meet those dreams? If not, does it really matter to you? Can you stay committed to your writing even if it means you'll have a small readership and maybe not snag that big Random House brass ring?

This is what all writers need to think about, and what I'll be talking about at LitFest this Saturday. 

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