My blog post on Monday was an exercise in positive thinking. When I get down on myself or upset about writing, it’s hard to see the good side. That’s especially true if the measure of my success is supposed to be how many books I’ve sold.
Don’t get me wrong, that’s an important measure. It’s a tangible measure. It’s a measure you can show to other people and say, “See! I’m making it! I’m a real author!” It’s what agents and big publishers use to decide if I’m worth taking a chance on. But when I don’t have any sales, it’s really hard to say that. It’s really hard to believe I’m a real author.
I have to remind myself that there is so much more that goes into being an author and so many other measures I should use to convince myself I’m doing well. Sometimes I’m successful with it, and sometimes I’m not. It all depends on my mood.
When I feel less than worthy and think I need to give up, that’s when I re-evaluate what it means to be successful, and that was why I wrote that post on Monday. I may not sell a ton of books, but I’m out there connecting with people. I’m sharing my passions. I hope that somewhere down the road those encounters will turn into sales, but if they don’t, at least I get to meet some really cool people.
It’s not always easy to see the positive side of things. I have dreams of being a world-famous author and being able to quit my job to focus solely on creating books, and there’s nothing wrong with that. Without dreams, I wouldn’t push myself to try. I wouldn’t continue to write books. Yes, it’s incredibly discouraging when it looks like those dreams won’t come true or reality knocks me down a peg, but that’s when positive thinking becomes important.
The world doesn’t care if I succeed or fail. It will stand in my way if I let it. Every so often it pushes me down and wrecks my self-esteem. But I get to decide if I let it hold me down or if I’m going to rise above. I choose to rise above, but sometimes it takes a little work to get there.