Success at last – my first rejection letter!

In case you all may have missed it, I am a Writer (thanks Jeff G!) and I have been busy writing and sending out the results to one and all.

I have approached this task in various ways. By selecting recipients in different target markets, researching current topics and responding to submission requests.
Shucks, I even bared my soul to some, explaining what made me ‘tick’ as a writer.

And there it was. My first rejection, in all its glory! OK, so it said I was not the fit they were looking for, whatever that means, but hey guys & dolls, it was still a written reply. This was the only written reply out of some 20 odd submissions.

I am revelling in the sunshine of this acknowledgement! Onward & upward?

This notice will most definitely go on my notice board, along with many other ‘firsts’.

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365 Things

Busy reading – 365 Things I Learned the Hard Way (So You Don’t Have To) (The Digital Writer) [Kindle Edition], The Digital Writer (Author), Jonathan Wondrusch (Illustrator).

Part of the book description stated:

You can write any future you want to.

“The key to success is deciding the future you want, and then determining the cost of that future and whether or not you’re willing to pay the price. If you are, then you must to do everything possible to keep your eye on the prize until you can see the gold finally glistening in your hand.”

Being a struggling writer, I found this extremely uplifting; right up until the postman arrived and dumped the month end bills into my letter box!

I sat back in my chair, staring at the pile of misery and wondered how creative this writer was going to get this month. I looked across at the goldfish bowl, former home of the recently departed ‘Goldie’ and now residence to all the current bills.

The bowl runneth over; again!

Well, one thing was for sure. In the real world of struggling writers, I was in good company. The second revelation was that I was going to need a bigger goldfish bowl.

It was time for a brisk walk outside to clear the depression. Then a cup of tea and back to reading 365 Things.

Five things not to tell your wife.

The importance of being truthful to your readers.

What has this got to do with the boss lady? Quite a lot, as both misdemeanors could lead you down a slope of no return.

By this stage, female writers will be smiling knowingly, while guys will be hanging our heads in shame! If you are one of those rare men that are faultless, then I will seek your advice later?

But coming back to writers and being honest with your readers.

In his book “The Speed of Trust” by Stephen M.R. Covey, says that lack of integrity and trust in others slows life down and makes it more expensive. He also tells a story of how Warren Buffet did a very large business deal based on a handshake and it only took a few months to close the deal because they had a great deal of trust between them.

Now if we accept that writing is a business like any other business and that your readers are your business partners, your customers and friends, then it is essential that writers when starting out build a sound relationship with their readers. So, when building a report with your prospective readers, remember that they are going to be spending their hard-earned money buying your books, your ‘products’ and  by placing their trust in you, they will enjoy what they read and in return, offer you as the author, the greatest gift of all – referrals!

What is so important about referrals? Well, unless you intend to only write one novel, or one magazine article or one post in a blog, then you are in this for the long haul. You will be building relationships, gathering followers or as Jeff Goins puts it, ‘Building a Tribe’.

Take time as writer to develop these skills. Just as poor writing skills lead to poor content, under developed plots or shoddy grammar, integrity is also in the building mix of solid foundations.

Oh, and now go back and tell your wife that you broke a dish last night when making that midnight snack!

No, I am nothing like Jeff Goins !

I was standing in a supermarket queue yesterday, watching what a well-balanced lot my fellow shoppers were, when I overheard a mother saying to her child, “I wish you were more like your sister !”
Wow, I thought. If that comment does not screw up that poor child’s life, nothing will?

In this ultra competitive world of ours, we, the great unwashed, are constantly striving to improve our lot, by constantly comparing ourselves to others and in particular, to the standards those people set.

Since starting along this road of being a writer, I have been devouring fast amounts of advice on being a writer, from sources too numerous to mention. Now don’t get me wrong, there are many salient points writers like Jeff Goins puts across, but it is critical that you carve your writing image as an original, not a copy or mirror image of someone else.

They say Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery; I am not so sure.

Tempus fugit – a writer’s nightmare?

Sometimes even the most mundane events in a writer’s life, like a minor illness, get in the way of the daily tasks, like sitting down in front of the keyboard and completing the 2 hours creative entry to ones latest writing project.
My constant visits to the throne room, during the last few weeks, left me slightly debilitated and frustrated at the ineffectiveness of the antibiotics I was consuming.

A bathroom contractor has been asked to quote on certain modifications, allowing this writer to maintain his creative typing to be less interrupted and the swing out laptop table will soon be in place! Hopefully, my time management will be retored to normal.

Are you an On-Line Hater?

Came across this interesting competition via Twitter.

Have a look at it at http://www.bizsugar.com/blog/2012/04/19/tips-dealing-with-online-haters-contest/

My entry was as follows:

“I can only dream of building a tribe of digital haters! Being a somewhat silly old foreign ‘Git’ in the land of my forefathers, I spend most of my senior years observing those that walk among us on this wonderful island they call the United Kingdom.

Of course, until now, I have often wondered which side of the fence I sat on?

There is a fine line between those that whinge (which I have been told that the British have turned into an art form) and those that offer constructive criticism.

Then another learned person once advised me that the creator have given me one mouth but TWO ears and that I may just learn more from listening? He also had the audacity to tell me that no one knew I was stupid until I opened my mouth!”

The point that I am trying to make, is that there are many forms of writing out there, but perhaps this is the saddest of them all. Why some people spend their time writing nasty things about others on-line, I do not know. If only they could channel their rage into something more positive. But then again, some would say that this is the very essence of ‘Free Speech’?

You are a Writer (So start acting like one)

Need some transparent advice about writing? Then read “You are a Writer” (So start acting like one)  www.youareawriter.com

To Jeff Goins , many thanks for sharing this with me.

For some time now, I have been searching for a transparent explanation of why I want to be a writer and indeed the fact that I was already a writer. I just needed some affirmation?

Not a blogger or businessperson?

Around page 20, I got a little bit confused with this statement; further on though, you did explain.

I especially enjoyed the point form of the important bits.

For example, if I needed a platform, then do 1, 2, and 3. Magic!

The Elements of a Brand, namely Name, Image and Voice. Hard hitting specifics!

Your e-book has finally provided me with a clear, no nonsense explanation of how, what where and when; and more importantly, the ‘why’ to writing.

Up until this point, all the resources were confusing me.
I now have a game plan and for this I am grateful.

Once again Jeff, a big thank you.