Thursday, May 16, 2013

Publication Prep Part 1 - BELIEVING

Don't think dreaming big is wise?
Well... it worked for me...
as shown above!
I'm a big believer in dreaming big.

When my daughter is "on deck" at softball, I always ask her, "Lacy, are you going to hit the ball?"

At the beginning of the season, it never fails. She ALWAYS responds with a shrug of her shoulder and says, "I might."

And Mommy responds with a classic hands-on-hips lecture.

You aren't going to "might" hit the ball! You go out there and hit that dad gum ball. I wanna hear you yell, "YES, I WILL HIT THAT BALL!!!!!" Be CONFIDENT. You CAN do this.

Because my sweetie CAN hit that ball. She's actually REALLY good at it.

And then, after she smiles and says, "Yeah, I'm gonna hit the ball, Momma" she stands in the "on deck" spot (not sure what that is really called) and practices hitting the ball while the player in front of her does so.

She swings to warm up her arm. She psychs herself up, determined to hit that ball.

And about 50% of the time, she does.

Publication is the same way. We can't go into this expecting to fail. We can't get up to bat with our manuscripts and be like, "No one is going to like it. No one will publish this."

Because if we don't believe in our writing... why should a publisher? And even more, why should a reader?

We use our heart when we're writing. Writing can be very emotional. So if your heart isn't convinced that you can write a sellable book...then there's a good possibility that your heart won't be 100% in it. You do NOT want your heart giving a half-hearted effort:-)

Now for you pessimists out there...

I know there is a lot of importance in managing expectations and making sure we don't get too cocky in our writing. Sometimes that can bring forth a bit of disillusionment and things like people sending agents crazy queries like, "God told me you'd be my agent and that my book will be published" or "This is the BEST manuscript you will read this year."

Yeah, don't be uppity. It doesn't look good on you. Kinda like bell-bottoms or super poofy bangs.

But there is also a lot of value in believing in our dream, in shooting for the stars, in trusting that God has GOOD things in store for us.

The worse thing that can happen is that you fail.

And honestly, whether you believe or not, that is always in the cards as a possibility.

If you don't try... you've failed before you start.

Discuss: Are you a half-full or half-empty writer? How much do YOU believe in your writing? When you start thinking negative thoughts, what do you do to combat them?


Debra E. Marvin said...

I like to feel optimistic about my writing. Small successes sure do help. I dream of those things like 'the end cap' or 'best first book'... the things you see this time of year when the published book awards come out. Yet, I know Many Many superb authors don't get these stellar moments and we must learn to cherish the journey and the hope that our writing will bless someone out there.
Otherwise = it's a lot of time and effort, isn't it?

I really enjoyed your book Krista and I hope to do a review someday. I'm notoriously behind on doing reviews. You should be very happy with such a great story!

Beth K. Vogt said...

Believing in yourself as a writer is so important, Krista. But it's also vital to have a community of writer-comrades who believe in you too. That way when your belief falters, they can bolster you until the doubts disappear! You help build your daughter's confidence -- and that's what we as writers can do for one another. (I know that's what you Alley Cats do for on another!)

Krista Phillips said...

Beth, I TOTALLY AGREE!!!! Having support is HUGE for those down moments... And we ALL have them!

You need your fellow teammates along with those on the bench rooting for you and cheering you on!!!

(beware though... there are also people on the *other* bench who will boo you a and have NOT cheer for you... gotta learn to ignore those too, or even better, allow their jeers to get you even more determined to prove them wrong!)

Krista Phillips said...

Debra... honestly, in my dreaming, I didn't dream specifically of the end cap (I was only ON the end cap i that picture because it was a local store that I had a book signing at and he manager was super nice to put it there for a while... still looked good though!)

My DREAM, honestly, was to write a book and have it published for Jesus.

Well, let me back up. My FIRST dream was to write a book.

I finished my first book in 2007.

THEN I dreamed that I would publish a book... wrote a second book... and finally got it published in 2012.

The end cap and how many books I sell... I don't put numbers on my dreams. My BIGGEST dream that all my smaller dreams encompass is to write for Jesus and to let my stories reach the heart of people for Jesus... whether it is encouraging women in their faith or being a seed planted in a heart of an unbeliever. THAT is my dream, my goal, my heart's desire.

Publishing was just a part of it.

Jeanne Takenaka said...

Krista, what an encouraging post. And you're right, we have to make up our minds to believe. I have to remind my kiddos of that sometimes. If they (or I) don't make up their minds, they won't accomplish, or even come close to accomplishing their goals and dreams.

Those times when I'm discouraged, I find it's wonderful to have friends I can call or email who set my eyes back on the truth. And Jesus is always good at reminding me about His truths and His views of me. I'm precious to Him.

BTW, I'm reading your book and loving it!

Ashley Clark said...

I just love this post, Krista! It is so true! I'm a firm believer that the desire to write is a gifting God has entrusted us with, and confidence in that gift is a big way we receive it--because you're right, if we don't believe in our writing, why should someone else?

Love seeing that picture of your book on the shelves! :)

Amy Leigh Simpson said...

Such a great post! I am a firm believer in this... In the practice of calling things that aren't as though they were. It's like that great poem by Stuart Smalley

If you think you are beaten, you are.
If you think you dare not, you don't.
If you like to win but think you can't, it's almost certain you won't.

You've got to think high to rise.
You've got to be sure of your self before you can ever win the prize.

Life's battles don't always got to the stronger or faster man,
But in the end the man who wins, is the man who thinks he can.

(And yes, I quotedthat from memory.-nerd alert!) :)

Krista Phillips said...

I LOVE THAT, Amy! Might need to print that out and frame it and put it above my desk! That could totally be my motto!!!

Susan Anne Mason said...

Hello Alley Cats,

Hope you all are having a wonderful retreat!

Great advice, Krista. Without belief, you'll get nowhere. Once you get clear about your writing and where you want to go with it, determination and perseverance will get you there. (With a little prayer of course!)

Love that poem, Amy!!