Kristen Lamb

Author, Blogger, Social Media Jedi

Kristen Lamb — Photo

Setbacks, Success, Excuses, Oh MY! The Truth About Publishing & Myths About Muses

Image via Flickr Creative Commons, via Stupid.Photos
Image via Flickr Creative Commons, via Stupid.Photos

Much of any kind of success is related to attitude. We can’t control the weather, the future of publishing, the global economic conditions, but we can control our attitude. To be successful at anything, there are a few core principles we should embrace and work on every day. These are muscles of character.

We have peace, joy, patience, self-discipline. Those things are already inside of us. However, we must choose to work on them and do our part to strengthen these “character muscles” to enjoy their benefits.

Ignore Happiness and Strive for Joy

I don’t care for the word “happy” or “happiness” because it’s tethered to other words like “happening” and “happenstance.” Happiness is one of those things that’s easy dictated by what is happening. Joy, however, is a constant and something we can choose.

If you’ve been writing any length of time, you know there can be some dark times. Negative people, poor results, rejection, failure, setbacks, etc. I’ve written works so complicated I needed a team of sherpas to find my original idea (and my own butt).

It’s easy to be miserable when life or our art isn’t cooperating. It’s hard to choose to remain peaceful and continue pressing with a positive attitude. Yet, the more we exercise peace, joy and self-discipline, the stronger they become, and *sigh* resistance is what makes them grow. Resistance can be a good thing if we remember to keep it in a positive perspective.

Okay, this book turned out to be a mess, but can I fix it? Can I learn from it?

Original image via Wikimedia Commons, Nuclear Weapons Test Romeo
Original image via Wikimedia Commons, Nuclear Weapons Test Romeo

Keep going. This is why it’s always so crucial to keep moving. If we stand too long and fixate on things we can’t control, we can become paralyzed and end up doing nothing at all.

Feelings Lie

I’ve talked about this before, but many lessons bear repeating. Feelings are great. They are useful, but they are liars and self-centered. Feelings can be affected by weather, hormones, stress, a washing machine that’s broken down (TWO TIMES NOW), lack of sleep, allergies, and on and on. If we wait until we feel like doing something, we’re setting ourselves up to live life strapped to Hell’s Tilt-A-Whirl.

As writers, we like to talk about “being visited by our muse” but the tough reality is the muse is about as reliable as a Russian compact car. Sure, enjoy it when she comes and hangs out, but the muse is flaky and prone to see something shiny and disappear for days or weeks. “Science” shows that one way to catch our muse is to ignore her. Muses are related to cats and few things make the muse want to shower love like when we sit at a keyboard working without her.

Just ignore the glitter she leaves in your keyboard.

Life Doesn’t Stop for Dreams

Discernment is another area all of us should seek to grow. It’s easy to go to extremes. I’m guilty. I work until I am half-dead, then need a week to recover. That is just dumb. Hey, I’m getting better. The truly tough part about discernment is it’s related to maturity, meaning we can only gain either by making a LOT of mistakes and doing a lot of things wrong. We learn to be balanced by getting a taste of being unbalanced.

If we aren’t failing, then we aren’t doing anything interesting.

And, at this rate, my life is truly FASCINATING :D.

Life goes on even when we write. Kids get sick, spouses lose jobs, taxes have to be paid, and on an on and on. There is only one right time to begin writing. NOW. Even if it’s just a little bit. It’s good for us to at least start. “Starting” helps us develop intuition and know when feelings are just messing with us.

As an example, I worked out almost every day through my pregnancy with The Spawn. And I will preface this with telling you that I was not a disciplined person AT ALL at the time. I did most things when I was in the “mood.” So I made myself a promise when I got pregnant that I would go to the gym and walk five minutes on the treadmill. If, after five minutes, I still felt miserable, it was okay to quit.

In ten months of being pregnant, I only quit a handful of times. Most of the time, the getting going was enough to burn away the “feelings” and then I felt BETTER for having set foot in the gym.

Writing can be the same. Just vow to write a few words or read so many chapters of a critical book (craft, research, fiction, etc.). Baby steps are steps and they add up and, over time, develop the character of a professional.

I know when I was new I loooooved excuses. I still make them, though not as often. The night before last, we had yet another ice storm. And yes, the Yankees all laugh, but I don’t own any warm clothes. You can’t buy them here. Texans are unaccustomed to cold and don’t think of things the same way as people used to wintery weather.

Anyway, it was time for bed and I went to let Pippa out for one last bathroom break. I knew the lower steps had iced, but because of the shadows and icy fog, I was unaware the top of the porch had iced as well. When I turned to let her inside, both feet flew out from under me in cartoonish fashion and I landed, quite literally on my head. Thankfully this is the toughest part of my body.

Actual image of Kristen's Guardian Angel
Actual image of Kristen’s Guardian Angel

Anyway, the point of this is I have learned (to be more careful in ice). But yesterday I rested. I couldn’t move my head and felt like I’d been beaten. But there was a time I would have just kept on going like some idiotic Energizer Bunny. There was also a time, I would have taken a hard bump on the noggin and then taken off two weeks because my neck hurt. Whiiiineee.

It’s that whole discernment thing.

Diagram of Kristen's Epic Stupidity
Diagram of Kristen’s Epic Stupidity

Yes, today I’m sore. My neck and back are stiff, but life continues. The house needed to be cleaned and the blog needed to be written and I still have work to do. And I am certain my future will have all kinds of challenges (so will yours), but the point is that, if we wait for a challenge-free-life to begin writing or to continue writing, we’ll be writing from the afterlife.

You could also be writing from the afterlife if you are dumb enough not to look for ICE.

But the lesson here is people who’ve been hit in the head make better bloggers…

Wait, that wasn’t my point. Well, I’ve forgotten it. The key thing to remember is the largest part of winning is simply showing up.
 
We will always find excuses. Excuses are easy, but costly. Choose to focus on what we can control. Choose to have joy. Choose to be peaceful despite the storms, because storms will always be there. Step a foot out. Getting started is often most of the battle.

What are your thoughts? Do you struggle with making excuses? Hey, we are human, we all do. What ways do you help keep yourself accountable? Do you make excuses because your tendency is to put others ahead of yourself? Are you afraid of failure or even success? Do you beat yourself up over baby steps and forget that they DO count?

Make sure to check the announcements below, because WANA has put together some seriously cool FREE stuff to help you in your writing journey.

I love hearing from you!

To prove it and show my love, for the month of February, everyone who leaves a comment I will put your name in a hat. If you comment and link back to my blog on your blog, you get your name in the hat twice. What do you win? The unvarnished truth from yours truly. I will pick a winner once a month and it will be a critique of the first 20 pages of your novelor your query letter, or your synopsis (5 pages or less)

ANNOUNCEMENTS, AGENTS & FREE STUFF:

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– To join the presentation, go to WANA International’s site at 8PM Eastern (New York) time / 5pm Pacific (Seattle) time.
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67 thoughts on “Setbacks, Success, Excuses, Oh MY! The Truth About Publishing & Myths About Muses”

  1. Malena LottMalena Lott

    One of my favorite quotes is, “I shall not let circumstances dictate my joy.” Applies when times are good or bad (because our thinking makes it so.)

    Reply
    February 12, 2014
    • jhanna1512jhanna1512

      The picture of your guardian angel forlorn over your mishap made me laugh out loud. Your style of writing shows what fun we can have doing just that writing. Such colorful language. I enjoyed it very much!

  2. KellyRaeBooksKellyRaeBooks

    Reblogged this on Kelly Rae & Jocelyn Bell Books and commented:
    Every time I read this blog I learn something new and valuable to my writing career! Emotions LIE! When the MUSE refuses to be helpful, writing is the answer. Writing is always the answer. Oh and watch out for ice!

    Reply
    February 12, 2014
  3. Ernesto San GiacomoErnesto San Giacomo

    Hi Kristin, “…people who’ve been hit in the head make better bloggers…” Did you really mean that?
    I’ve ran into the office wall five times and I’m not feeling like a better blogger. I’m not feeling better mentally, physically, spiritually, or intellectually either. 🙂
    On a serious note…hope you feel better soon.

    Reply
    February 12, 2014
    • Author Kristen LambAuthor Kristen Lamb

      I’m just sore. Ego probably took the worst of it, LOL. Hey, it gave me something to blog about :D.

      Reply
      February 12, 2014
  4. gretchenwinggretchenwing

    I zoomed right in on that hit in the head quote too. Think I might borrow that. Feel better soon, Kristen!

    Reply
    February 12, 2014
  5. sknichollssknicholls

    I put my first book out there, and was so very pleased when I received 25 positive reviews. I sent it off to a professional reviewer for an editorial review and it came back complete with instructions on how to improve it by making it a trilogy. They gave me two stars. It was critical and it smacked, but I learned some things. Then I had a local person post a 2 star review. It wasn’t very pleasant, was written poorly like a text message with no capital letters, and was one, long, run on sentence that did not make a lot of sense. It did say that the book COULD be good, and ended saying it needed a professional editor (which it had sadly). Anyway, I said all of that to say this : Your post comes at a most critical time for me. I greatly appreciate your words of encouragement, and I will continue to find joy in writing 🙂 I love your blog.

    Reply
    February 12, 2014
  6. Damian TraslerDamian Trasler

    Kristin,
    I sat down to write a blog post about coping with failure, and WordPress said “Hey, have you seen what Kristin just wrote?”. Thanks for confirming what I thought about the subject!

    Reply
    February 12, 2014
  7. Anne StuessyAnne Stuessy

    Cat-like muse and lying emotions — I just love your posts! And appreciate the kick-in-the-butt reminder to get mine back in the chair. Oh, and we yanks may have closets full of sweaters, but we don’t walk any better on ice than you Texans!

    Reply
    February 12, 2014
  8. HarliqueenHarliqueen

    Great post, got me feeling very inspired and motivated!

    Reply
    February 12, 2014
  9. Janet Walden-WestJanet Walden-West

    “If we wait until we feel like doing something, we’re setting ourselves up to live life strapped to Hell’s Tilt-A-Whirl.”
    That is a crucial lesson and one it took me until the second rugrat’s arrival to learn.

    Reply
    February 12, 2014
  10. Laurie A WillLaurie A Will

    I try to make excuses. I just accept what is. With two kids, a large house, debilitating allergies, I just can’t get done what I’d like to in a day or even a given week. I’ve accepted that. I’d love to get up at 5 a.m. a spend an hour or two writing before my kids get up, but I don’t then I don’t have the energy to take care of my kids at the end of the day. I’ve people say that if you can’t get at 5 a.m. you are not serious. I’ve heard them preach the importance of having a separate room all to yourself that’s sound proof and you can’t be interrupted and you must write at the same time every day. I’ve stopped beating myself up because I can’t do that now. I will continue to work towards all of that. But right now my writing time is whenever I can get my butt in the chair and open my computer. It may range from 15 minutes to two hours. I may be every day to a few days a week. I do what I can do. I am not always happy with it, but all I can do is keep working towards my goals. I do sometimes beat myself up over the baby steps. At the same time, I know that part of me will never be satisfied with what I can accomplish in a day. It wouldn’t matter how much I get done a small part of me will insist I should have be able to do more. I’ve learned to live with that part of my personality too. At the end of the day all that matters it that I’ve done my best. Some days, it’s pitiful, but some days it’s damned spectacular! Oh yes, and if I waited to do things until I felt like it, not much would get done. I just try to keep moving forward, no matter how many times I have to stop and start.

    Reply
    February 12, 2014
  11. Devyn DawsonDevyn Dawson

    Your guardian angel and mine must exchange stories. A few years ago I fell on the ice…my hip saved my head by landing first. Six months later, I went to the doctor on a 90 degree day and told my doctor I fell on the ice and hurt my hip. He was baffled why it took so long to see him. I said people my age don’t fall and break their hip. X-rays showed that I had fractured it but the injury was now old (I guess I am too)… I don’t know why I told you that…. it was embarrassing. My reason for replying – A. you didn’t have any comments yet. B. You’re right, showing up is half the struggle. As a writer, I find tons of excuses… the cuteness of a cat, barking dog… crying baby… Vampire Diaries…food (my family insists on eating every day…. they think working from home gives me the time to cook. Right now, I’m at my desk, reading your blog when I should be writing, and watching snow melt. Thanks for the distraction…but I gotta write, until Ellen comes on. I do make my daily goal of 3K words, but it is a struggle to show up. Good luck!

    Reply
    February 12, 2014
  12. Elen Grey | Deep in B-ville Writing Over the GarageElen Grey | Deep in B-ville Writing Over the Garage

    I’m not laughing at anyone in The South experiencing Mama Northern Winter. I live in Country Winter where we expect ice and snow and ice and snow and ice and snow and have mountains of ice melt and snowblowers and city plows, and we still find it daunting at times. I even have ice cleats for shoes. 🙂 Feel better. I find a timer set at 15 intervals helps me to get certain jobs done. A lot of jobs, actually.

    Reply
    February 12, 2014
  13. Kayla JKayla J

    I find your blog so challenging, but in the best way. “If we stand too long and fixate on things we can’t control, we can become paralyzed and end up doing nothing at all.” This applies to so many things for me, including my writing. I am getting better, but it’s slow going. My most common excuses are just not feeling it when I have a free moment and feeling like I need to just veg after the kids are in bed. But you are so right! I made myself sit down to put a few words down the other day and ended up with a CHAPTER added to my novel. I hadn’t been writing because I hadn’t had a decent thought for the next scene, but once I made myself start, the ideas started and got some good work done!
    Thank you so much, Kristen, for your excellent blog and advice.

    Linked on : http://justbetweenusblog.blogspot.com/

    Reply
    February 12, 2014
    • Kayla JKayla J

      Oh, as a side note, I fell down my stairs a little over a year ago and had a brain contusion! I don’t know that it made me a better writer, but I didn’t actually start my blog until a few months later, so maybe there’s a connection 😉

      Reply
      February 12, 2014
  14. Tam FrancisTam Francis

    I think this is why I liked NaNoWriMo so much it taught me to put all of my excuses and behind and just write. (Of course I like the idea of reading craft books and research etc–not that it would have worked for NaNoWriMo). I try to do SOMETHING every day that furthers my writing. Research, blog, writing, editing, etc. BEST advice!!!! Thank you again 🙂

    Reply
    February 12, 2014
  15. Tarla KramerTarla Kramer

    Love so much of this! ‘and my own butt’, ‘muses are like cats’ etc

    Reply
    February 12, 2014
  16. J. D. HagerJ. D. Hager

    I was wondering where that glitter on my keyboard was coming from. Hard to ignore it, because like most humans I am irrationally attracted to shiny baubles and bits. Plus that glitter gets everywhere. Thanks again for the inspiring advice.

    Reply
    February 12, 2014
    • J. D. HagerJ. D. Hager

      I also wanted to point out (before I pushed the wrong button on my iphone) that I waited almost ten years to have the time, inspiration, and trouble free life necessary to start writing again after I fell out of practice. I finally realized that I had to make time to write everyday even when I felt I had nothing to say. And low and behold, now I am writing everyday, despite the fact I still have nothing to say. But it’s progress. A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step. Or a single word. Thanks.

      Reply
      February 12, 2014
  17. Tamara LeBlancTamara LeBlanc

    I do make excuses, mostly about exercise lately…food is just too good *excuse #1* And going to the gym…I work full time now and don’t have time *excuse #2* There are loads of others that have to do with writing daily, doing housework, stuff like that. But like you said, I’m human and need to make mistakes, as long as I learn from them and move forward.
    Baby steps DO count. They’re important. They help us grow. And in my case, they help me navigate the stress of each day.
    I really enjoyed this post and loved that opening image of the car. LOL 🙂
    Have a great hump day!
    Tamara

    Reply
    February 12, 2014
  18. Lisanne CooperLisanne Cooper

    Life will get in the way and work against achieving your goals, if you allow it to. I did that for over 25 years, but never again! Thanks for the encouragement you give us newbies, your humor and ability to laugh at yourself, and your truly inspiring ideas.

    Reply
    February 12, 2014
  19. M.J. PullenM.J. Pullen

    I think we have the same guardian angel; I also think she has a good claim for excessive work-related stress. 🙂 Hope you feel better!

    Reply
    February 12, 2014
  20. EnsisEnsis

    Great post on a day when I really needed some inspiration.

    Reply
    February 12, 2014
  21. M T McGuireM T McGuire

    Love it. Hope your sore head is not sore soon… and watch out for the ice!

    Cheers

    MTM

    Reply
    February 12, 2014
  22. Kathy PalmKathy Palm

    So much truth in here I nearly cried. I will send you some salt for the ice thing. yikes.

    Reply
    February 12, 2014
  23. Timothy L. CerepakaTimothy L. Cerepaka

    Good advice, Kristen. For writers like me, who want to make a real career out of their work, making a habit of writing every day (even when it’s not fun or you don’t feel like it) is absolutely crucial. Hope your head gets better.

    -Tim

    Reply
    February 12, 2014
  24. estyreeestyree

    “And yes, the Yankees all laugh, but I don’t own any warm clothes. You can’t buy them here. Texans are unaccustomed to cold and don’t think of things the same way as people used to wintery weather.”

    Glad you aren’t too wonky today! I was born in Mesquite and lived several of my formative years in near to Bryan/College Station so I feel your pain…even living in NW Oklahoma kills me now. I have no idea how to dress in winter. I just freeze and do my best to sit close to heaters!

    I often find myself making excuses. With an 18 month old, excuses come easily. ‘I didn’t write today (meaning this month) because the baby didn’t nap long enough (meaning…EVER)’. Or…I had to do dishes…which I usually find an excuse not to do unless I need to write.
    The biggest one recently has been that I need to work on the crochet items Mom is using in her classroom for the kids’ reward box. Obviously I can’t write and crochet tiny animals at the same time. You people must be joking! Well…that and Pinterest.

    http://www.facebook.com/TyreeTomes
    http://alaynabellesmom.wordpress.com

    Reply
    February 12, 2014
  25. estyreeestyree

    Reblogged this on Here there Be Dragons! and commented:
    I love this author’s blog posts! Such deep and challenging statements to really make me think, and sometimes even act on things. Check out this great post on success vs. excuses and have a Blessed Day!

    Reply
    February 12, 2014
  26. Daven AndersonDaven Anderson

    Things can always be worse. In November 2011, a Chevy slammed into the driver’s door of my car at 45mph. I was back at work, and even lifting 50+ lb.objects, four days later. 👿
    When I complain that I can’t get any extra time off from work, I mean it! 😈
    The problem is, all the GMO’s and preservatives I eat (combined with over 20 years of retail experience) have turned me into a giant mutant cockroach.. 😉 Either that, or my saga is a Blues Brothers-style “mission from God” and it is my destiny to leave a trail of destruction in my wake.

    I am quite relieved that you survived your experience relatively unscathed, because we the authors of the world are blessed to have Mama WANA fighting on our side! 😀

    Reply
    February 12, 2014
  27. Chris Henderson-BauerChris Henderson-Bauer

    Oh, man. I needed this right now. I’ve been staring up at a mountain of giant projects and feeling like a mouse. But you’re right, the way I feel about it doesn’t matter. I need to do these things, and I can start with just a couple of steps. Right foot, left foot, walk back to desk, right hand, left hand, type type type type. Here goes.

    Reply
    February 12, 2014
  28. margaretmikkelborgmargaretmikkelborg

    Great post – as a therapist I loved your description of feelings as liars and self-centered! So true…I also admire your discipline – I am reminded of Virginia Woolfe who talked about the ‘angel of the house’ who was always insisting that she do something for the house before she sat down to write. I guess she was more like the ant–muse! I often find this to be the case for me as if carving out the time was somehow a luxury! Neverthless I know what you say to be true, and so often have ‘just started’ only to find that the next sentence came, and then the next and on and on – However I don’t push myself to start often enough so this was a very good reminder! Thank-you!

    Reply
    February 12, 2014
  29. symplysilentsymplysilent

    Kristen; I think Woody Allen said that 80% of success was just showing up — it’s up on the wall at Curves. Sorry about the ice. Since you’re from Texas, you probably already know about that dang wind and storm doors. Yikes. Thanks, Silent

    Reply
    February 12, 2014
  30. Joyce CJoyce C

    Thank you for this uplifting post, Kristen! Sorry to hear about the head bump.

    Reply
    February 12, 2014
  31. jorgem78jorgem78

    Great post. Totally agree that showing up is the most important part. However, sometimes you don’t have a ride to get there and that is the frustrating part. I often feel that I don’t have ideas to write and make lame excuse. Trying to change this.

    Reply
    February 12, 2014
  32. sharonhughsonsharonhughson

    I really needed to read this. I’ve been having a hard time getting motivated to write since my mother passed away on January 22. It doesn’t help that I finished the third book in my series and now it is time to return to book one and begin the rewrite.
    And it needs tons of work. It looks like Mt. Everest and no Sherpas are in sight.
    I am generally an incredibly disciplined person and reading this was just what I needed to reignite the fire under me. Thanks, Kristen.

    Reply
    February 13, 2014
  33. Keith ChanningKeith Channing

    “Happiness is one of those things that’s easy dictated by what is happening. Joy, however, is a constant and something we can choose.” This is a close parallel to what has been one of my mantras for a very long time. Happiness is a transient state, and is a reaction to agreeable circumstances; it can be achieved and lost in a moment. Contentment (which I prefer to joy, the latter being too close to the language of spirituality for my taste) is an underlying condition that can ride the peaks and troughs without being threatened. Happiness is weather, contentment is climate.

    Reply
    February 13, 2014
  34. julitownsendjulitownsend

    I love your blog – I learn so much from it.
    I’ve been making excuses for a good part of the past eight months, but a few weeks ago, I realised I needed to make a commitment to write for one hour a day if unless it meant I’d have to lose sleep. My draft is inching along, far too slowly for my liking, but far faster than it was before.

    Reply
    February 13, 2014
  35. julitownsendjulitownsend

    Reblogged this on Inspiration to Publication and commented:
    I’ve been making excuses for letting this blog fade to nothingness for some months now. They were good excuses by the way, but it has gone on too long.
    I’m reblogging this post from Kirsten Lamb’s blog so I can refer back to it as a reminder every now and then. Things don’t grow when you make excuses, it’s time for action.
    This is my feeble attempt to get me going again.

    Reply
    February 13, 2014
  36. julitownsendjulitownsend

    Reblogged to julitownsendwrites.wordpress.com with the comment –
    I’ve been making excuses for letting this blog fade to nothingness for some months now. They were good excuses by the way, but it has gone on too long.
    I’m reblogging this post from Kirsten Lamb’s blog so I can refer back to it as a reminder every now and then. Things don’t grow when you make excuses, it’s time for action.
    Thanks, Kirsten.

    Reply
    February 13, 2014
    • julitownsendjulitownsend

      Ah, it seems this new reblogging has fooled me. Sorry about the double up.

      Reply
      February 13, 2014
  37. kennedyryanwriteskennedyryanwrites

    Kristen, this all registers with me. I am always amazed at how often I read just the right thing at the right time. I have been pondering contentment a lot. Really just confirming to myself that contentment and joy are things I can hold onto; I can actually create, and happiness is fragile and so subject to circumstance. And I’m also doing a study now on emotions – understanding them and using them to signal myself, but not allowing them to dictate how I behave or what I decide. Joy, peace, self-discipline, discernment – these are all words that truly guide me in my faith. I love integrating them into my writing process; harnessing the power of them for my writing. Thank you for modeling how they can guide me as a writer, too.

    Hope your noggin is better! We need that at full capacity for great posts like this! 🙂

    Reply
    February 13, 2014
  38. miraprabhumiraprabhu

    Reblogged this on mira prabhu and commented:
    I love Kristen’s blog — mainly because she tells it like it is…in this case, part of the enchilada about the writing life and the stream of excellent excuses one makes NOT to write….from not having a reliable muse or support group…to not having a big enough chunk of time per day to get right down to that troublesome next chapter…ad nauseam….i also enjoy Kristen’s style…she’s REAL!

    Reply
    February 13, 2014
  39. miraprabhumiraprabhu

    Kristen…love the face on your guardian angel….her expression is a lot like the one mine wears…and i enjoy your writing — as a writer with a million excuses not to write — you hit the nail on the head with this post. I reblogged it….want lots of people to know what goes into serious writing….thanks!

    Reply
    February 13, 2014
  40. moxeynsmoxeyns

    “But the lesson here is people who’ve been hit in the head make better bloggers…” Kiristen, I love your sense of humour – and I hope your head is feeling better, with no lasting ill effects.

    When I started to write seriously – a whole couple of years ago now – I made the same promise to myself that you did; however bad the day, and it was a very black period, I had to write for 5 minutes. It took over a year to write my first novel; but it got done.

    Reply
    February 13, 2014
  41. LaneyLaney

    As always, you inspire me, and you get my butt back in gear at the most crucial of times. And as always, I thank you above and beyond for that. Ice for your head. 😉

    Reply
    February 13, 2014
  42. Elle KnowlesElle Knowles

    Yes, its bad to fall on ice, but worse when there is no ice for an excuse and you are in a parking lot full of people. (At least they were strangers I’ll never see again!) You have inspired me to get up and get to work on that sequel I keep putting on the back burner. Thanks!

    Reply
    February 13, 2014
  43. HollyHolly

    I needed to read this today. I’m a classic slave to my mood and what’s happening. I found some resolve from somewhere when I got up today though and it’s been a better day for it, so far. Thank you 🙂

    Reply
    February 13, 2014
  44. susanscottsasusanscottsa

    A friend forwarded this to me .. so pleased she did! Most inspirational and marvellous. Thank you. Ice is useful to apply to head if bumped …

    Reply
    February 13, 2014
  45. danieltrumpdanieltrump

    Brilliant, and inspirational words for a man who loves to write but is too often swayed by the flotsam & jetsam of emotion. Thank you, I will come back to this often.

    Reply
    February 13, 2014
  46. Jennifer RoseJennifer Rose

    Currently, my problem is trying to find balance between working TOO much. It gets really intense towards the end of a first draft and I quit everything but work and writing – that means no tae kwon do, zero Netflix, my friends forgetting who I am, and getting up an extra 2 hours early to pop out 3k words before work. I try to balance that with more silent time where I can grab it- in the car, taking a few extra deep breaths, a little meditation before bed…

    Normally, I get up an hour early before work and I found this to be one of the biggest game-changers in getting my novel first drafts complete.

    Reply
    February 13, 2014
  47. DaveDave

    Kristen… I love that line: “If we aren’t failing, then we aren’t doing anything interesting.” The fear of failure can really put a damper on my efforts, but, in reality, this is just an ‘easy out’ I am giving myself. I have since matured out of this feeling, and try to express myself honestly through writing. Thank you for your tips and pep-talk on attitude. Yes, indeed… attitude goes a long way in one’s willingness to put the first step forward, and, to keep going once under way.

    Reply
    February 13, 2014
  48. jorobinson176jorobinson176

    Not nice falling on your head. I hope you’re feeling not so sore anymore.

    Reply
    February 14, 2014
  49. adstarrlingadstarrling

    Hope you feel better soon Kristen. And I agree with the happiness vs joy statement. Too many times, people feel depressed or a sense of failure because they haven’t achieved their definition of happiness. Joy is better. You can get joy from the smallest things.
    Xx

    Reply
    February 14, 2014
  50. syzygymsyzygym

    Sorry, I can’t find your tonight feed at WanaIntl site.
    Gabriela Pereira, on: “How to Get the Most Out of A Conference.”

    Reply
    February 14, 2014
  51. syzygymsyzygym

    Reblogged this on Syzygy Fiction, and commented:
    The notes on joy and happiness are the best I know. I need to get permission so I can have my MC use them.

    Reply
    February 14, 2014
  52. Marlie HarrisMarlie Harris

    Reblogged this on Don't open that door! and commented:
    My grandfather used to say something to the effect that if you aren’t making mistakes, then you aren’t working. Kristen’s point here. Just keep writing!

    M.

    Reply
    February 24, 2014
  53. ChristinaChristina

    I had a back-log of blogs posts to read in my email and I found this one today and it couldn’t have come at a better time. Thank you!

    I’m sorry about your poor skull. I fell three times this winter and injured my back and my knee. I stepped out my front door and went butt over teakettle onto our tiny porch. When I bend my knee, its now making a sound much like a bag of potato chips being crushed in the fist of a giant. So I feel your pain.

    Please enter me in your fancy contest! I could use the manuscript help. I tried to post a link to the post where I linked your post, but I don’t think I know what I’m doing with Gravatar. I linked to your post on my post entitled “No More Excuses” at Christina Mitchell: Delusions of Humor.

    Reply
    February 25, 2014
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