It’s easy for an author to get caught up in the daily hoopla of the online romance community and, while the negativity’s a known creativity zapper, being surrounded by positives can be just as damaging to the muse.
It’s so easy to get caught up in the successes of others. You want to be that big deal in the Publisher’s Lunch. You want to have written that book the Smart Bitches and Dear Author love like whoa and damn. You want to be the It girl on the cover of Romantic Times, with a double-page spread. You covet that three-book deal with the back-to-back-to back release schedule.
Or do you?
Listen, if you start getting hung up on what other writers are achieving and feeling some pressure to keep up, it’s going to wreak havoc on your psyche and you’re going to stop writing.
What is YOUR dream? Not what you think success is as measured by the romance community, but what do YOU want?
When I set aside what everybody else is doing and dig deep, MY dream hasn’t changed since I was a teenager:
I want to write for Silhouette, and I want to win a RITA.
That’s what I want.
It feels good to strip everything else away and focus on what I want—what will fulfill me as a writer.
If you’re a writer who spends a lot of time hanging around online with other writers, you should look deep inside yourself and decide what YOUR dream is in one sentence. Put it on a sticky note and stick it over your monitor to remind you to chase YOUR dream—to remind you as you’re running through this giant publishing maze not to be distracted by everybody else’s cheese, but to stay focused on getting YOUR cheese.