Hello there fellow writers! January has been an amazingly productive month for me. I’ve written three — count ’em 3! — new drafts of books, and revised 4 others! Phew! I’m pooped.
But this isn’t about patting myself on the back.
Nope. I wanted to share some of the reasons and resources that have helped to make it such a productive month.
First, work has been slow. I’ll admit, that’s not a great thing (um, hello tax man. I’ll get you that check soon…) but it has allowed me to actually get my BIC and Focus. Butt in Chair time is critical, yes, but what also works for me is Deadlines.
I love deadlines. I like the whooshing sound they make as they fly by.Douglas Adams
I wrote one of those 3 (have I mentioned THREE) manuscripts in two days for an editor who wanted to take it to a Creative meeting. Boy did THAT news light a fire under my bum.
But there are also a few other things that helped.
- Having a critique group. These guys keep me level-headed and accountable. If it’s my turn to post, I post. There’s no point in having wonderful writers ready and willing to give you their honest feedback if you don’t have anything to send to them. So I keep writing!
- Storystorm. If you haven’t joined, and you want to know anything about the picture book industry. Take a look at Tara Lazar’s free resource: Storystorm.
- 12×12. Julie Hedlund’s 12×12 Picture Book Challenge asks its members to write one new draft each month of the year. Plus it provides webinars and activities to keep you motivated.
- Other resources that I use to stay inspired:
5. Plus a bunch of writer blogs including:
6. There’s also CONTESTS as well (like #PBPitch if you’re on Twitter) that can lead you to agents and editors.
7. And finally, Some of the best lessons I ever learned came from classes. Especially https://www.citylit.ac.uk/courses/history-culture-and-writing/writing/children-s-writing
I’ll keep adding to this. Because I get asked A LOT “I’ve written a book, what do I do next?”
My biggest piece of advice:
Don’t write in a vacuum.
It’s dark and lonely in there.
(ok, here’s the real quote…)
Outside of a dog, a book is man’s best friend. Inside of a dog, it’s too dark to read.Groucho Marx
Until next time…