I love New Year's Day! I love the idea of reflection and fresh starts. I'm an optimist, a spring baby and partly Scottish (bad Robbie Burns reference). I can't help it. Every year I spend a good week prior to the big day meditating on my successes and failures...taking stock of all the things I said I was going to accomplish and did while learning from what I didn't do so well and letting go. And of course, there are the resolutions.
My resolutions have been a work in progress these last several months. Through coaching my clients and writing this blog I am more resolute than ever with the notion that we are the editors of our lives. It IS a major element of my coaching, after all. A poet will tell you every word counts in their craft. Fiction writers know that every action, every nuance in scene, every characteristic of their protags and antags must serve a purpose. I feel more and more that every action I take in my life must serve a purpose. I'm not talking about micro-management here, writers - what a creativity killer! Rather, I'm talking about placing a more intense focus on where time is spent, how it's spent and choosing positive activity that brings value to my life or the lives of those around me (which is also totally cool). Every action must serve a purpose; they must bring forward motion through enlightenment, peace, clarity or happiness. Where do I need to apply the red pen and cut the fat, so to speak? What do I need to expand, flesh out?
Many bestselling and award-winning authors have contributed their personal success stories, insights and tips here on this blog (for free, I might add), to help you all gain perspective on the creative and publishing processes as a whole. They found success through an unparalleled confidence in their ability and clarity of mind. All of them know writing is a discipline and have consistently bettered their craft and approach to the publishing industry by doing what it takes to be a good writer and persevering through the rough spots. It took time. And it all started with a singular passion and a good deal of focus.
Some people make resolutions and stick to them. Others plan grand, virtuous courses then revert back to their old ways a few weeks or months into the New Year. I like to look at resolutions as a work in progress...something you've decided to commit to for the long haul, perfecting as you go, not a quick fix to an old problem.
This New Year pace your selves. Understand success is something you build day by day. Doing everything necessary to become a better writer and building your author platform takes years. There is no race but there is action. Everyday there is action that should move you forward with your craft, with your goals, adding value and richness to your writer's life as a whole.
This New Year, I wish for you all to truly enjoy and fully engage in your creative life!
Here's to 2011!