So in my journey to follow my passion of becoming an author I learned some things. I thought I'd share them with you so you can start off the New Year in the right way. So here we go:
Push past the fear: I started writing my novel on a trip to DisneyWorld. Why? I don't know. The inspiration just hit me. Maybe it was ambiance of Disney Magic or the giant turkey leg I ate while riding Pirates of the Caribbean. I was well on my way when all of a sudden...fear set in. Fear of the unknown (how was I going to finish?). Fear of failure (how the heck was I going to get it published). Fear of rejection (would anyone like my book?). Those fears threatened to derail my quest. So what did I do? In true Marine fashion I pushed through. Whenever fear started creeping in, I pushed it back. You need to do the same. Kick that fear and doubt out of your head. It will only hold you back. Toughen yourself mentally for the hurdles ahead and always maintain sight of the end goal.
Figure it out: I'd had a little exposure into the publishing world but not much. So one of the doubts that began to creep in on me was "how the heck am I going to get published?" As I tend to do, I took to the internet. You can find fantastic resources for pretty much anything. In no time I was back on track with a solid plan for getting my book published; all because I took a little time to just figure it out and ask a couple questions. So if you're scared about how to fulfill your passion, jump on your computer and type in any question in one of the many search engines. Try "how do I start a baking company" or "how do I get published." You'll get a lot of hits. Dig through and see what you can find. Oh, and don't forget to take notes and bookmark your favorites.
Ignore the naysayers: I don't know if you've heard about it, but there's this underground battle going on between traditional publishers (think the guys in expensive NYC office towers) and the new publishing platforms like Amazon. Well, the old breed wants to maintain as much control as they can while Amazon wants to take care of everyone including the independents (that's me). After reading a lot of blogs and comments I found a common thread among the supposed "real literati." You know, the people that think John Grisham stinks and that only high-brow literature like Jane Austen (nothing against Jane. Pride and Prejudice is one of my faves) should ever be considered for publishing. Well guess what? Those people don't represent the vast majority of readers around the world and yet we look to them to tell us what we should and should not publish. I actually felt myself being pulled in by their condescension and had to do a quick about face and run for the hills once I realized they were trying to crush my dream. You'll run into the same thing. Family that say going into business for yourself is crazy. Professionals of any industry that say you'll never carve out a niche in their business. Don't listen to them!!! As long as you've done the prep needed and really done soul-searching about whether you have the ability to take your passion to the next level...
IGNORE THE NAYSAYERS!
So in a nutshell, let 2012 be the year of Your Passion. Do your homework and start down that path. Put on blinders when you need to but surround yourself with people that will give you constructive feedback but always push you in the right direction. Now get out there and take some action!