The Practice of Creativity

Do You Have a Success Plan? & Affirmations-366Days#112

Posted on: April 21, 2016

Affirmations-366Days#112: I envision and plan for success and fulfillment as a writer.
For new readers, here’s why I’m committing to writing affirmations, about the creative process, during the next 366 days.

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 “Have a success plan, in this business and in this art, as writers, we are prepared for failure…As writers and as an industry, unless something is a major blockbuster, we talk about failure a lot…We tend to teach how to deal with failure, how to get out of failure, how to get over failure to get to success. And, then when success happens nobody talks about it.”
Jake Bible, Writing In Suburbia podcast

I’ve become a fan of Jake Bible’s ‘Writing In Suburbia’ podcast. It’s geared toward pro-writers, but is chock-full of great information for people at various writing stages. The podcast is irreverent and also deals with the less glamorous side of the writing life (e.g. embracing housework chores of the day). Jake’s a prolific writer across many genres. He typically writes a novel a month. You read that right, a novel a month!

Anyway, I really enjoyed his ‘Prepare for Success’ episode which reminds writers to take some time to envision and make a plan for success. He notes that the general writing culture is often overly focused on the rejection and failure that is part of the writing life. I agree and that’s why this episode felt so refreshing. If you’ve been following my blog for a while, you know that I took up posting daily affirmations as a way to encourage the development of a supportive mindset in service of our creative work. He also mentions the value of affirmations.

I was reminded of his post when about three weeks ago, I spotted an email from an editor. I had submitted a story to her themed anthology. I sent in a story that I really believed in, and frankly thought was great for her anthology. It had gone through several writing critiques and multiple revisions and I believed it was ready. It had gotten rejected elsewhere, but I was undeterred.

But, as I looked at the subject line and the first few words of the email (“Michele, thank you so much for submitting  X story”), I had already prepared myself for yet another rejection. But, I’m so glad I did open it, because it was an acceptance! The editor said things like “It’s great!” and I thoroughly enjoyed reading it and would like to formally invite you to join the X Anthology.” I will post the details about this the anthology as it gets closer to publication this summer.

So, it was refreshing (OK, thrilling!), to receive this acceptance and break the expectation that I automatically would be rejected. The other issue that Jake talks about in this episode is that being successful is also undertaking all the additional work after something gets published. It’s about building capacity to handle all the good things that may come your way, practically and psychologically. That’s where a success plan comes in handy! And, indeed, the editor who accepted my story is an indie publisher and is encouraging all the accepted authors to do things to help make the anthology successful (e.g. setting up newsletters, Facebook pages, etc., depending on what we already have in place). She is helping us create an individual and collective success plan.

Check out this episode as Jake provides valuable information in preparing oneself for success before, during and after publication.

Do you have a success plan in place as your writing dreams come true?

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Michele Tracy Berger

Michele Tracy Berger

Author, Academic, Creativity Expert I'm an award winning writer.

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