If you read nothing else today, do yourself a favor and go read PBW’s post. I always love her blog, but sometimes she just hits the nail right on the head at just the right time – for me, that was this morning.
A long time ago, I unsubscribed from lots of different loops and groups. I’m an RWA member but didn’t join any of theirs, either. I was a member of some other group for published writers, too and after I year I never renewed.
The thing is, in my opinion, those loops and groups can be toxic. They were for me. And this is no one’s fault but my own. People on the loops were doing nothing wrong at all – they were talking about the business – complaining / celebrating / disseminating information – just what the loop is there for.
For me, it’s too much information I don’t want or need. I don’t want to be ignorant about the business side of things, but there’s a whole chicken little the sky is falling tendency in the writing community that can make even the most stoic of authors slump in defeat.
Dude, this job can be hard enough without the outside influences whispering in my ear, telling me that this market is slumping or I can’t write this or that because two editors declared it dead.
It’s why I don’t go on Twitter all that often – mainly, I just follow friends and readers, but inevitably, other stuff seeps in there (as it’s supposed to) that I just don’t want to know.
The internet can be a really bad place for your head to be in when you’re trying to write. Too many opinions, way too much snark which, IMHO, is the easy way out, and just too much can sap all your creativity and make it impossible for you to get all that shit out of your head.
I was really good for a while and then I started looking around a little more. I shouldn’t have – I feel it, and not in a good way. So PBW’s post was a really timely reminder for me to stay the hell off the internet unless it’s my own space – here, FB, etc. Otherwise, I gotta tune out for a while – “walk away from the wolves and the sheep, and use your non-writing time to accomplish something personal that has meaning to you.”
Here’s something to chew on, when you listen to the, this can’t be done / can’t sell / will never make it people- when I started writing SEALs, I was told that I couldn’t / shouldn’t write them. Because Brockmann wrote them and no editor would ever want them. Even my agent at the time said, well, SEALs will be a tough sell, but she believed in my books, so that didn’t stop her.
The editor who bought my SEAL trilogy? Brockmann’s editor. So yeah, who would’ve thought, right? Because I’m not writing her SEALs – I’m writing my own – my own take, my own voice, my own stories. And I believed in my books enough not to listen to people who told me, you can’t.
I’ve always hated those words.
So (and this goes for writing and for real life as well) stop listening to everyone and pay attention to your gut – it’s what saves the men in my books – it’s what will steer you in the right direction every single time.