Monday, August 29, 2011

Is Your Writing Cup Half Empty Or Half Full?

We writers all have ups and downs. Heck the whole roller coaster ride metaphor has been used so much (by myself included) that it's become cliche! But is it really all in how you look at it? Or is that a myth? I say it is how you look at it! And to prove my point, I am listing both the negative way to look at common events in a writer's life, and the same thing with a positive spin.

  • Negative
    • I just got another rejection
    • I can't put a decent word on this page
    • No one will care if I give up
    • No one wants my dystopian vampire novel 
Boy I'm depressed just making those up! So let's look at
  • Positive
    • This one was personal and had some really good tips OR I'm ready to send out the next batch of queries OR Every writer gets rejected, but maybe there's something I can do to improve this query/manuscript OR This means I get chocolate!
    • I've put words on the page! OR I can always revise later, no one's ever gotten it right on the first try.
    • I have a whole community of helpful and supportive friends who are going through the same things I am OR I can't ever succeed if I don't try OR I won't be happy unless I write, so I'm going to go write something!
    • I'm going to put a new spin on an old concept/genre OR This was a great try, I'm going to start work on a new novel and put this one away for a while OR Before I write the next book, I'm going to do some research to verify it's a marketable concept. 
I guess what I'm trying to say here is that there are a million ways to look at any one thing, and it's up to YOU to decide whether to take it as defeat, or to embrace it as a helpful step of learning on the way to success. 

32 comments:

  1. Wonderful positive attitude, Lisa.

    Some more positive ways to look at a rejection: 1) For some writing organizations, a rejection letter serves as proof that you are a professional! 2) you can nail it to the wall and be like King! 3) You can use it at tax time to show that your writing is not just a "hobby." :-)

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  2. That's a great attitude to have. In fact, I think it's the only attitude you can have if you want to be successful over time. Too much negativity sours a person and makes it that much easier to give up once and for all. This is a great reminder to keep on truckin'. :)

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  3. That's an awesome way to think of it! Besides, the more rejection you get can sometimes make actually getting published an even greater victory.

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  4. I think we have to try our best to look at the positive or we'll drive ourselves nuts!

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  5. In life, attitude is everything! All we need to do is look at the successful people of the past. Their lives weren't perfect. As a matter of fact, most of them were up against a ton of adversity. We need to see ourselves as what we want to become. :)

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  6. Great point! It's all about how you choose to react.

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  7. Excellent advice, especially since I tend to be a half-empty kind of person. (It makes me laugh that writing the negatives made you depressed. That kind of attitude IS depressing and something I want to change.)

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  8. Absolutely! Awesome viewpoint, Lisa. It's all in how we view things, in regular life and in our writing life. Thanks for the Monday pick-me-up!

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  9. Great viewpoint and one I've had to learn to do. I've had to learn how to become postitive and it's amazing how it makes you feel and how you look at things.
    Thanks

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  10. Great point!

    I'd be thrilled with any sort of personalized rejection. ;-)

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  11. That is so true! It all depends how you look at it. I always drown my sorrows in chocolate, too! Any excuse is a good excuse.

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  12. Thank you!

    -Vicki

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  13. Beautifully said. By taking the positive we stay positive and keep writing and improving. It leads to good things, though maybe not always exactly when we'd like it to.

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  14. Half full...of air. usually I cry a lot and wonder why no one will date me. Oh wait, that was in High School, ummm, never mind.

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  15. I always try to look on the up-side of things, because the alternative is to just be depressed. Whenever I get a rejection, I remind myself that it's actually a good thing. It means I'm one agent closer to finding one that loves my book. After all, if the agent doesn't love the book enough to want to represent it, they wouldn't be the agent I want!

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  16. Great advice, Lisa!! It's always a good reminder for us to look at things in a POSITIVE way!! I, for one, always look for the silver lining in bad news and/or situations. :)

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  17. My glass is always half full. If I don’t succeed with this manuscript, I’ll grow and work on the next—one day I’ll get there… it’s the journey not the destination-at least for me.

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  18. So true, attitude really is everything. (now if I can just remember that...) :) Thanks for the reminder!

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  19. Another brilliant post.
    I lost track of my rejections. I've even had rejections since being published.

    They sting, but I give myself 24 hours, eat some chocolate, chalk it up as a learning experience and keep going.

    I have to stay positive and keep going. It would be so easy to get bogged down in the negatives.

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  20. I vote glass half-full. Great list. I have to say my awesome critique partners are often the ones to spin a boo-hoo into a yahoo!

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  21. I'm sure this is a shocker, but I LOVE this! Nothing more to add, which feels weird for my normally verbose self, but . . . sometimes it does happen. :p

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  22. If I could only get off time sucking Twitter I would have enough time to do my own writing. If I did that I wouldn't be here~
    Great post!

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  23. Loved how the same things can be turned into something positive! I *try* to do that all the time, but sometimes I end up looking at the empty half of the glass. So. Those days, I'll invite you and your positive energy here! Okay? ;)

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  24. This is an excellent post. I dwell too often in the negative camp that it's actually almost foreign to me when I have a bit of optimism. But what it all comes down to is how you look at it. I'll keep this encouragement in mind, thanks!

    Great to have found you and follow you!

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  25. Love your way of thinking. I've always been a half-full chick. Things can get murky at times but there is always something to hold on to. :)

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  26. Love this post! Great things to keep in mind :) This one hit home for me:

    *Before I write the next book, I'm going to do some research to verify it's a marketable concept.*

    :)

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  27. So true! I love your spin on these thoughts. Another way to look at the first one is, "At least I'm submitting!" Lots of people write, but many of them are too scared to actually submit their books.

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  28. Absolutely true! Taking on a positive point of view means less time being all bummed out and more time being productive and fixing whatever problems may exist. And it just feels better to be positive and upbeat.

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  29. My writing cup is definitely half full. I have my moments of doubt and negativity but I always manage to feel positive again the next day. I love writing too much to let anything about it get me too down.

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  30. Half full all of the way. If I didn't try to see the positive, even in rejections, I would have quit long ago. :)

    Angela @ The Bookshelf Muse

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  31. Oh I love this!!! And YAY for chocolate!

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  32. This made me feel better about my writing. Thanks for making me look at how to make positve out of the negative.

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