I know what doctor I would choose. Do you? Dr. C reflects the type of people I'd want treating me or working with me in the editing process. But I wouldn't want a person to sugarcoat the truth just to help me feel better about my writing or my choices. Truth tellers are essential in my world. Are they in yours?
Words without actions are useless to me. The wrong words are useless to me. Telling me I look thin won't help me fight to lose the extra ten pounds I'm carrying (or is it twenty?). And telling me, oh your writing is fabulous, when it in fact needs to be tightened or improved upon only sets me up for failure.
I'm glad I have a great CP/Reader in VA who can be honest about what she likes and doesn't like in my work. She's invaluable to me. I trust her to be real with me. And that is important in this business of writing.
But words without action mean something more to me in my writing now that I am a PRO. They mean I must do more than write my books, or revise the books I've written. They mean that I must stretch my neck out on the chopping board and send the work I've written out into the world as contest entries or as queries/partials.
Contests are easy. I can take the critiques with a grain of salt as long as there is something positive in the mix. But sending out queries and synopses? Now that is scary stuff to me. I'll admit it. If I don't submit and query, then it adds a level of comfort in that my work is not being rejected. Again.
But what is the point of writing my stories if I don't act? Writing our books without following up and submitting them is pointless. Sure we might not get the results we want, but we must tuck our disappointment away and try again. There is only one way to get published. We must submit our work. Period.
This year I am committed to broadening the scope of my PRO life. This means I must do the following on a very regular basis:
-write the dreaded synopsis (and if you were in the Heart of Dixie meeting this Saturday, Kira Sinclair's craft corner about conquering that demon was invaluable! Thanks Kira!)
-write a solid query letter for each novel I am currently trying to sell.
-tighten my first three chapters after a full revision (the millionth I think by now)
-prepare my pitches for two different novels
On a long term basis, I am creating a website on Mobile Me, and I am creating a PRO Facebook page. This means coming up with a great tag line for my writing style and target market.
How are you putting actions behind your words? How are you promoting yourself? And when you get those rejections, how do you recuperate and forge ahead again into the great abyss?