Writing is hard. It’s frustrating and it’s isolating. There are no guarantees that your manuscript will get published, and even if you do publish, there are no guarantees that people will buy your book.
Then there are the reviews. In order to sell your book and get visibility as an author, you need readers to review what you’ve written. But reviews are subjective and after pouring your heart and soul into something, when someone hates what you’ve written, it stings.
Pushing past all of those obstacles is tough. Trying not to let it get you down is even more difficult. Add in regular life and it can seem almost impossible to persevere.
I was just about ready to give up. Seriously. It’s been so long since I’ve felt good about anything having to do with my writing that I wanted to just stop.
And then over the past couple of months, I’ve gotten breadcrumbs of good news. An editor might be interested in one of my manuscripts. Another editor might be interested in a different manuscript, one which I thought was dead in the water.
And I finaled in a contest. Now, to clarify, I DID NOT WIN. Someone else did. Yay for them! But I was a finalist. And they didn’t let everyone be a finalist because I entered three books and only one of them finaled (that actually makes me feel better). So it’s something. Not a lot, because there are lots of contests. But in this one, I did well.
Those breadcrumbs are enough for me to keep going, for me to convince myself to persevere just a little longer. It put a smile on my face for a day.
So I’m not giving up. I’m meeting my self-set daily word counts. I’m finishing manuscripts and I’m giving them to my critique partners to tear apart so I can put them back together better, stronger and sellable. I’m hoping the publicity from the contest—because apparently it comes with publicity—will get more people to read and review my books. And every time self-doubt creeps in, I’m reminding myself that I can do this.
It’s the little things.