Here’s what we discussed during yesterday’s Write Way Wednesday (if you prefer to watch rather than read, head over to my Facebook page to check out the video):
- Agent news: I received two more rejections from my latest group of submissions, however, their guidelines state that it is ok to query another agent even if one says no, so I’ll likely be submitting to these same agencies again. You might wonder if continuing to query is a pointless venture given the current worldwide situation, but I do follow several agents on Twitter who have said that despite not being able/allowed to go into their offices, they are still working. Many are, in fact, eager to receive new queries. So, if you are a writer and are ready to query right now, I strongly urge you to move forward.
- Newsletter: First edition went out last week, but you can still head fill out the form on the home page to subscribe.
- Gratitude practice: Gratitude is important always—it keeps our minds searching for and focused on the positive—but it seems even more crucial right now, so last Tuesday I instated a yearlong gratitude practice. Every day around 9 am, I post a short message of daily gratitude on both Facebook and Twitter and I invite you to join me. Use these posts as reminders to embark on your own gratitude journey.
- Book #2: What’s going on in the world is both the reason I should be making more progress on my second novel and also the reason that I’m not making much progress. With so many activities cancelled and so many places closed, I am finding myself at home more and with more time to write, but I am also finding myself to be easily distracted and my energy waning. To combat these feelings, I’ve had to return to the basics. To The ABCs of a Purposeful WIP:
- Acknowledge accountability. There’s no question that a good majority of what is going on around us right now is out of our control, but what is within our control is our own response. We can choose to expend our energy blaming and accusing or we can use it purposefully. We can take care of ourselves and our loved ones. We can be accountable for our health and wellbeing, our time and resources, our focus and our fight.
- Set boundaries. This is a little tricky as many of us are at home with significant others and children, but boundaries are essential to progress. And sanity. This may take intentionality and ingenuity—like setting timers or turning a car or a closet into a workspace in order to find focus or quiet—but it can be done.
- Create consistency. This is going to look different for all of us, but because no one knows how long this will last, it’s important to settle into a new normal. So use a calendar or a planner to develop a schedule, build structure, and find those precious moments to keep going on that goal. Even if it’s twenty minutes, heck even if it’s only two minutes a day, own it.
- Disable distractions. It is so tempting to drown our fear and anxiety in social media or binge-watching all the TV shows. But numbing out not only distracts us from where we want to be, it also creates incredible backslides which we will eventually need to work even harder to recover from. So indulge, yes. Offer grace, absolutely. But try to set some limits and strike a balance.
I realize that no two people are experiencing this in the same way. We might all be in a boat, but it’s definitely not the same one. So, although it feels a little silly to continue talking about goals and growth and progress (and trust me, I have repeatedly pondered the purpose) that is something I can do. And continuing to work toward your goals and growth is something you can do. Our paths might look a little different right now, but we don’t have to lose momentum.
I am fortunate to have already been set up to work from home, and I am grateful to be able to be here with and for you. So talk to me. Tell me how things are going for you. Tell me about your wins. Tell me about your struggles. Post your thoughts and questions in the comments and then meet me on Facebook next week Wednesday at noon so we can discuss them (or watch for the recap to be posted here Thursday morning).
Until then, stay safe, stay healthy, and remember progress is always possible, but we must be purposeful in order to make it happen.