Everyone is talking about the book and DVD called THE SECRET. What if someone wrote a literary version of the book, unveiling the secrets that unlocked the door for unpublished writers, giving them the combination to guaranteed publication. Think it would be a best seller? I'd buy it! I believe that the same principles that make you a success in daily life could be applied to fiction writing.
The Law of Attraction is the perfect fit for writing novels. Although we believe writing is a solitary pursuit, my experience in the last couple of years says that it isn't. Let's explore this idea by looking at the Three C's and whether they can unlock that secret door to publication!
Contests: You've finished a manuscript. Your mom loves it, your best friend says that it is the best piece of fiction she has read, and your dog sniffs in approval. Now you need feedback from strangers, to test the mettle of the story, discover whether your craft needs work, hone your skills. Send it off to a contest. For a minimal fee, you have the opportunity to have honest feedback by avid readers. Okay, there are times when a judge is unfavorably disposed to your manuscript for personal reasons, but you need someone to toughen you up for reviewers, right? Contests can also offer you the opportunity to get your work in front of editors and agents who normally wouldn't see it. If you final or win contests, it helps with name recognition. And that can only help your plight for publication. After all, people need to see your name at least 24 times to take action (like buying your book), so you need to start sending that message out today. Entering contests can build friendships. I still stay in touch with contest organizers and judges that I've met through contests. A few judges have gone out of their way to mentor me, offer me feedback on my writing, a priceless gift...all resulting from entering contests.
Conferences: The laws of attraction at work. Nothing beats face-to-face contact. Although you can make incredible friends online, meeting someone and interacting with them in a relaxed setting (read drinks at the bar), can make all the difference. I've met many published writers and editors who have taken the time to share ideas and help me learn about the industry. Pitch appointments give you ten minutes of precious time for the undivided attention of an editor or agent. They aren't at their desk, they are focused on what you have to say about your book. E-mails and even phone calls can't replace face time.
Contacts: Here's an important one. Remember that motto, "it's better to give than receive"? It applies when making contacts in the industry. Be sure to send thank you notes whenever possible to judges, editors, and fellow writers. Celebrate your friend's successes like they were your own. Touch base with people. Try to give the personal touch, rather than a form thank you note. Help others whenenever you can. Not only does it make you feel good, you create a strong circle of buddies that will pick you up and dust you off when you receive a rejection, encourage you to keep trying, and celebrate your good news alongside you!
Okay, there are the three C's of success. Now writing a darn good book that editors can't put down can also help, but that's a discussion for another day! :)
I'd love to hear what people think about THE SECRET and how it might apply to writing. Whether you're published or still waiting for THE CALL, maybe you'll be kind enough to share some of your secrets along the way--what helped and what didn't. After all, we need to keep the Laws of Attraction in full force.
Wishing you all success in your pursuits!