Climbing toward a Dream

26 01 2015

ladder to sky I always loved this picture of a ladder reaching to the sky. When I first decided I wanted to write, I drew a symbol like this as my logo. I pictured myself climbing that ladder to success, rung by rung, each rung representing a new skill, a new publication, a new height. And slowly, I started learning and climbing.

Some of the most important steps along the way were joining SCBWI, participating in critique groups, reading craft books, and taking classes. I even added an MFA to my goals. But the most important step was doing the writing itself. I’d read somewhere that to become an expert in any skill, you needed to put in 10,000 hours and write 1,000,000 words. So I did.

And the work began to pay off. First in small writing assignments and then in books. During the early writing years, I drew another picture in addition to that logo–a stack of books. A tall stack set up in a spiral shape. I was reminded of that recently when I decided to take a picture of the books I’ve written in the past five years. That drawing looked almost exactly like this:

7_BooksInterestingly enough, some of the titles I put on those books were related to the topics of these books. I’m a big believer in using visualization to achieve goals, but I was surprised at how much the two stacks resembled each other.

I’ve seen so many writing dreams come true  in 2014. This past year has been filled with book contracts and book releases and speaking engagements. All of it fun, although sometimes exhausting. Sometimes the sign hanging behind me at this reading was definitely a reality.

8_reading  One of my long-term goals was signing at BEA, and I not only got to do that, but I got to watch friends and a CP sign too. And that was one of the highlights of the year — seeing so many friends and acquaintances making their dreams come true.

And 2015 is promising more of the same. Several CPs have signed book deals, and I know more will follow. I’m looking forward to what this year will bring. And wishing all of you a move up to the next rungs of the ladder to your dreams.

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5 responses

27 01 2015
Yvonne Ventresca

I love the visualization and your stack of books!

27 01 2015
lje1

Thanks, Yvonne!

28 01 2015
Carrie-Anne

I’m a big fan of taking pictures of one’s books as they continue to grow. My seventh grade English teacher said when Isaac Asimov stood next to everything he’d ever written, it was taller than he was, and that became my own writing goal too. But one has to write, and keep writing, for that dream to become a reality.

28 01 2015
lje1

What a great visual of Asimov, Carrie-Ann! And a wonderful goal. Maybe that could be my next goal (although I’m guessing I’m much shorter than Asimov, so it wouldn’t take quite so many books).

You’re so right about the key being to keep writing. Many people dream, but then they don’t do the work. It’s obvious you not only have the dream, but also the dedication. I hope you’ll post from time to time on your progress.

28 01 2015
Marcia Strykowski

Your hard work and dedication is really paying off!

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