“If you tell yourself you are going to be at your desk tomorrow, you are by that declaration asking your unconscious to prepare the material. You are, in effect, contracting to pick up such valuables at a given time. Count on me, you are saying to a few forces below: I will be there to write.” ~ Norman Mailer
wow. Tolstoy was, amazing. Everyone loves his work. He is a writing god. Yes?
And somedays, maybe you even think that you have that literary genius bubbling up.
You are doing all the right things… and yet?
Rejection after rejection, after rejection. big sigh
First of all….It’s not getting the rejections that you should be focusing on, young padawan… it’s how many submissions you are putting out there in the ether.
Writing, like most sadomasochistic endeavors, is a numbers game. It’s about pushing through barriers and about persistance. Forget sleep. Forget food. Forget dust bunnies and fine dining.
And forget about Tolstoy.
You are not him. The days of writers like him are over.. can you ever imagine anyone saying anything like this… about a contemporary author?
The Soviets planted him at the top of their literary pantheon, largely because of the radical philosophy he preached amid the early rumblings of the October Revolution. The publication of “War and Peace” and “Anna Karenina” made Tolstoy so famous that one contemporary described him as Russia’s second czar. He used that position to rail against the church, as well as the police, the army, meat eating, private property and all forms of violence.
Lenin loved Tolstoy’s “pent-up hatred.” He anointed him “the mirror of the Russian Revolution,” ignoring his pacifism and belief in God. As the 50th anniversary of his death approached, the Central Committee of the Communist Party began preparing two years in advance, so a monument would be ready for unveiling.
Okay, so now.. your petty rejections feel a little bit less harsh. and yet?
You want to be loved. You think your story was the best thing you’d ever written. You believe your novel is perfect and needs no edits. You just know that Oprah would cry if she read it. Heck, your Mom loved it, right?
listen to this:
Ten years ago Tolstoy’s great great grandson asked the church to revisit the 1901 ruling that excommunicated his great-great-grandfather. He never got an answer.
read more about TOLSTOY’S snubbing here
You’ve read it a million times.
Just do it.
You’ve heard it said… Getting your butt in the chair is the hardest thing.
So you bought a nice comfy chair…and now, in this new year? In 2011?
You have decided you will finally write. Every day.
And you can.
Don’t think you’ll write good words every day- or that you will like what you write everyday, or even that the words you write will be anything more than a list for the grocery store.
The thing is to get in the habit of having pen and paper, or computer, or smart phone handy for when those story ideas do some. That is what we’re driving for.
Writing, not as a chore, but as a habit.
Need a starting point?
If you are someone who gets easily distracted, or needs to work on a deadline, try these timers and alarms.
If you need goals and accountability? Join a local or online writing group that will keep you both motivated and on track with your projects.
And if you still need a kick in the butt? Write to us here. Let’s get you involved at one of our coastal 5 day writing retreats, where we guarantee you will get and stay on track.
Because that’s what writers do for each other.
If you’re a writer, you’re probably connected to social media in some way. Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and other social media channels provide writers of all genres real-time access to readers, so you better be on board.
Today, you don’t have to be a best-selling author to have a following. All you need is a computer and a decent Internet connection, and you have instant access to readers all over the world. Genius, isn’t it?
Sure, you have to have an inkling of knowledge about blog platforms and hashtags, but if there’s a will…well, you know the rest. You’re reading this blog, so I know you’ve got what it takes to build your brand. But where do you start?
At the very least, today’s writer should have a website or a professional blog. You can use your website to market to your readers, and to communicate with editors, agents, and publishers.
With blogging platforms like WordPress and Blogger, you don’t need to have expert technical skills to create your online presence. You can customize the look and feel within the blog tool, add unique pages, list your favorite links, and more. Be sure to include an option for visitors to subscribe to your blog so they don’t miss a single post.
If today’s writer has a blog, she probably sends out a tweet to her followers on Twitter every time she posts a new article (ah…and there are ways to automate that, too!). Hootsuite and Tweetdeck are a great tools for managing your social media marketing tools. You can see (and make updates to) your Twitter page, Facebook updates, and even your blog traffic…all on one screen.
So who is today’s writer? Today’s writer is a brand ambassador. Chief marketer. Publicist. Editor. Salesperson–all in one.
Question: If you are a writer—or want to be a writer—how are you using social media to connect to readers and build your brand?