Being Grateful: Notes to a Young Author Self

Love this post by YA author Ally Carter about all the things she wishes she could tell her younger, budding author self. It’s great advice for people at the beginning of their writing careers. One part I liked in particular:

“And the biggest piece of advice I can give you is this: take a sheet of paper and write down five things that would make you really, really happy in your career.  Then write down five things that would be “best case scenario” things.  And lastly write five “in your wildest dreams” things.

Keep that list.  Remember that list.  Because in this business the finish line is constantly moving.  One day you really just want an agent.  Then it’s a book deal.  Then it’s a bestseller.  Then it’s a movie.  Then it’s a castle next to JK Rowling’s.

In short, appreciate things as they’re happening, remember that once upon a time that thing was a dream of yours and that it’s still a dream for someone.  So be grateful every day.”

I think this is a great idea. Writing is full of disappointments and rejections, even for super-established authors. It’s easy to get caught up in thinking about the bestsellers and castles that seem just out of your reach. Until we all have castles next to Rowling’s, it’s good to remember all the awesome things happening now–even if it’s just that you finished a new draft or your critique partners said they loved the voice in your latest work.

Make sure to check out Ally’s full post for more great advice.

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