Friday, July 17, 2009

Some days are harder than others

Tip of the day: If you ever get a chance to go to an ALA conference, go! It’s so much fun to meet librarians, authors, publishing peeps, etc. and get free books!

Yes, I’m back from ALA where I got to meet Tina, one of my Author2Author blog buddies, for the first time! It was so much fun hanging out with Tina for a couple of hours.

I’ll be posting a blog entry about my thoughts and observations from the conference next week on my agent’s blog -

So, today you get what is on my mind in the day and life of a published author.

And here is what’s on my mind.

It is hard being an author.

I know, those of you who are trying desperately to get published, you’re pulling out your violins to hit me over the head. So let me explain.

It’s hard because you constantly compare yourself to other writers and your books to other books, even though you don’t want to and you try very hard not to. Through those comparisons, there’s only one thing that happens. You decide most everyone is better than you.

It’s hard because people have certain expectations about your books and sometimes, those expectations aren’t met.

It’s hard because even though you know and understand that not everyone will like your books and you are truly fine with that, once in awhile, a negative review really stings. After all, we’re human. And although we try very hard to develop a thick skin, sometimes something gets through. And it hurts.

And finally, it’s hard because when one book is done and gone to print, it’s time to look ahead and think about what’s next. But as a published author, it’s not simply coming up with a book idea you’re excited about and want to write. It’s coming up with something you think your editor might like, your readers might like, the marketing folks might like, etc. etc.

Recently there was a big discussion on a message board and in blogs about confidence. Here’s my take - just like body hair, confidence is one of those things that some people have more than others. I wonder, can we change the way we think? Can we, over time, become more confident and comfortable with who we are as writers? Maybe. I try very hard to replace the negative thoughts that pop up with positive affirmations. To remember the good things people have said about my books. And to be grateful for the publishing experience that has been mine.

But I do think there will always be a small part of me who longs to have the kind of talent Laurie Halse Anderson has. To be able to write the kind of books she writes.

In the end, that’s probably a good thing. Because ultimately, the wishing and longing push me forward. Make me work harder. And hopefully, help me write better books.

~Lisa, Miss Crafting a Career


amuse me said...

Well put. :) M

Kristina Springer said...

So true Lisa! It's kinda like motherhood too-- always thinking someone else is doing it more "right" than you are.

Anonymous said...

With every writing goal we achieve, there is something more to want!

Emily Marshall said...

It is hard, not matter what stage you are in.

DeenaML said...

I wish I had about 100 publishable books already written so I could just keep selling those and not have to worry about producing after the reviews hit. :)

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