Monday, November 10, 2014

Being Successful

Yesterday, I had the pleasure of attending the Kansas Chapter of SCBWI's (Society of Children's Book Writers and Illustrators) annual conference.

It was a good conference. I learned a lot. I met some interesting people. I took away a lot of great tips.

I'm not sure if I'll go back next year.

I might. Or maybe not. I'm a little undecided at this point.

SCBWI, like most writer organizations, is aimed at traditionally published authors. For a long, long time, that is what I thought I wanted to do as well. I've tried in the past. I've queried. Sent out lots of letters. Received nothing back, perhaps a rejection slip if I was lucky. I gave up after awhile, and then life took me other places. I have no regrets about that, but now that I'm older (if not wiser), I'm wondering if traditional publishing will help get me to my goals and whether I can count myself as successful if I only go the independent, self-published route.

I think I can.

Yes, I would love, love, LOVE to have my book on the shelf of a Barnes & Noble. I'd love to walk through Wal-Mart or Target and see something I've written be there for the world to see. That would be fantastic. But, is that what has to happen for me to feel successful.

I don't think so.

I think as long as I reach my goals a bit at a time, that I can feel successful at any point in my writing career.

My first goal is to have 5 books up online for readers to get their hands on.
Once I've accomplished that goal, I think I'll feel successful.

Another goal is to have earned enough in royalties to pay for some much-needed writing tools: scrivener, and a treadmill desk are both at the top of my list.

A great big goal I have is to duplicate, and then replace, my current income so that I can transition to writing full time. That's a mega huge goal!

Not one of these goals is contingent on having my book on the shelf at a bookstore, box store, or the library. But, I will still count myself as a success when I reach these goals.

I think it's important to focus on what really, truly are the goals you want to achieve, and the smaller goals you can set on the way to the great, big, granddaddy goals that will take some time.

What goals are you going to set to help you be successful?

Image Source: By Icely88 (Own work) [CC-BY-SA-3.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons

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