Wednesday, September 1, 2021

The Definition of Success as a Writer #IWSG


Before I started writing, I had big dreams and believed success meant achieving a household name status. Something equal to JK Rowlings or Tolkien.

Before I'd finished a single manuscript, I adjusted my outlook and decided success meant getting published by one of the Big Six. 

After finishing that first manuscript, I packaged it up and sent it off to countless publishers (I had no clue at the time…clearly). Turned out, I needed an agent. So I sent off countless queries…and more. I began to think that success meant getting an agent and everything else would fall into line. 

Ah, the positivity of youth.

I ended up getting short stories published, a novelette, articles, anthologies and even a book of Christian devotionals. Over time, my definition of success shifted again. 

That first short story I got published was a massive achievement. The first time I opened a bound book containing one of my stories was incredible. The first time someone actually paid me for a story was just as awesome. Success became finishing a piece and sending it out. It became seeing my words in print. It became reading the great reviews from strangers. It became getting fan mail. 

Then I decided to take the publishing reigns myself. A scary leap. My first book, Wielder’s Prize, was a monumental achievement because of the steep learning curve. It was years in the making and to this day, I’m super proud of it. 

Since then, I published Wielder’s Curse and then Wielder’s Fire. I released the boxed ebook set, Wielder’s Storm Trilogy. Then I released Well of Ash, my fantasy novella. I’m proud of every book and see each one as another rung in the success ladder. I have to pinch myself to believe I actually achieved all that. 

And then recently, I took another scary step and got back the rights to my Christian Devotional, Cling to God. I’ve been working hard on it and will be releasing its new and shiny self on November 3rd. Eek. 

If you’d like to help with its cover reveal and/or its launch, please leave a comment. 

What is your definition of success?

This post was written for the IWSG. Every first Wednesday of the month, members post on their blogs about their writing insecurities or offer some encouragement to others. If you are new to the IWSG or want to learn more, then please go HERE

 

50 comments:

  1. Hi Lynda - well your "Wielder's Prize" totally entranced me when I read it ... loved it - so sincerely hope you'll go on and get more recognition ... your writing is excellent and easy to read - I was engrossed. Good luck and cheers - Hilary

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  2. The more we're after it, the more we realize success is just accomplishing any step of the process.

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  3. Lot's of success here. I picture success as an endless latter. We are good as long as we keep climbing.

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  4. My idea of what it means to be successful has changed a lot over the years too. I'd be glad to shout out about your book in Follower News around the time of it's release.

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  5. Cling to God is all yours now. I'm curious about the new image for the cover. Another one of your photos?

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    1. At this stage, I'm going for something completely different...

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  6. So many types and steps to success! Love it.
    Of course, you can visit my blog any time you like!

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  7. You certainly have had an interesting writer's adventure. How can I help with the Cling to God cover reveal (whatever that is?) and/or its launch?

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    1. Oh! That's awesome, I'll find your email and send you some details. I will be sharing the cover on October 6th.

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  8. You've had so many different successes! I hope you take time to enjoy them all.
    Happy IWSG Day!

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  9. I think the perception of success changes for most of us over the years. Just meeting your daily word count is a success.

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  10. Hi Lynda, as we grown in our professions our definition of success changes, we get less hassled and are more at peace with our own pace.

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    1. That's so true. We also gain a better understanding of what we actually want.

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  11. I'd be happy to help you with your book. My email is pjlauthor @ yahoo. com

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  12. Getting a book into the world on your own is huge! That is a major success.

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  13. What a lovely thumbnail of your journey and growth as a writer! Congrats on getting your rights back and taking control of your devotional. That's a process in itself that isn't for the faint hearted.

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  14. Wonderful look at the history of your successes!
    Please sign me up to help with Cling to God. It's been a good devotional for me, and I would love to see it all shiny and new again. :)

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  15. I remember the thrill of getting my first short story published. It's unique!

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    1. I still get thrilled when I get an acceptance letter from a publisher, but nothing is quite the same as that first acceptance.

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  16. UGH! I'd be more successful if I proofread before publishing. Ladder! :)

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    1. hahaha, we all do that. For ages I had a typo in one of my online bios..yikes.

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  17. I really enjoyed "Well of Ash," Lynda. Good luck with your rerelease. I enjoyed reading about your writing history!

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  18. So your definition of 'success' changed with the years. I so agree.

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    1. Yep, it changed as I changed and realized what it was I actually wanted with my writing.

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  19. You are so brave at keeping moving forward and changing as you learn and grow.

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  20. The biggest thing is that you "adjusted" and made your own success. I enjoyed your adventures at sea and admired your plucky heroine. Keep writing, Lynda.

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  21. Lynda, I love hearing how you adjusted your definition of success over time. I had the same experience, so for me, success is finishing another manuscript, regardless of whether it gets published or not. And just between you and me, I have a lot more successes than we'll ever see in print. :D

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  22. I love all the adjustments you've made to your success yardstick over the years, Lynda. I've also pared down my expectations for success as I understand how much I still have to learn. But even the small successes are intoxicating.
    Julia Quay

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  23. I've had Cling to God on my reading list for awhile and loved to be part of helping you re-launch it!

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  24. It's interesting how the ideas change over time.

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  25. I would say you've definitely experienced some sucess as a writer. Your story is very inspirational.
    I enjoyed your original Cling to God book and look forward to the re-release.

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