Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Be Persistent

A professional writer is an amateur who didn’t quit. —Richard Bach

Just over a month ago, our family adopted an 11-year-old Bichon named Muffin Man. This 16-pound dog has three great loves: treats, walks, and cuddles. When he wants any one of the three, he will employ one of his well-honed begging tricks. He follows me around the house, trying to guide me to the front door and his leash. Muffin dances backwards and forwards on two legs, tilting his little head to the side and making eyes at my daughter, begging for a treat. He sits attentively, tapping his feet rhythmically, silently pleading my husband to invite him to jump into his lap! No matter how many times we say later or no—we’ll walk you later, no table treats, no sitting on the sofa—Muffin persists in asking for what he wants. Writers, we can learn from my dog!

Richard Bach said that a professional writer is an amateur who didn’t quit. How true. In this complicated, competitive market, persistence might be your best asset. The writers who succeed continued writing and revising their books even after their family, friends, or a few dozen agents told them to give up and get a real job. They submitted their books to hundreds of agents and publishers until something clicked. Then the authors persistently marketed their books until readers started showing up.

Yes, it is hard to get published. There are fewer publishing houses looking for bigger name authors who can promise thousands of readers. But there are also new, smaller publishing houses cropping up all over the place. Online venues offer additional places for writers to get published. But before any of that matters, you must persist in writing and rewriting until you have a manuscript that shines. The key to all of the above tasks is persistence. Now, get back to that writing!

P.S. If you don’t believe me, take a look at this article about 30 famous authors who were rejected repeatedly before they got published!

No comments:

Post a Comment