By far the best thing about being a writer is having writer friends. When I was painting, I never really resonated that deeply with other painters. I had my friend Lea who I simply clicked with the day we met (I think I was selling her some toilets…it’s a long story.) And I had acquaintances who were artists, but I didn’t have a group of painter friends the way I now already have a wonderful circle of writer friends after less than a year of committing to writing.
On Saturday, I went to support one such writer friend at her book signing. I bought her books and she signed them. Now, I am reading them. It was great to see other writer friends there supporting her too.
Having like-minded people around is so wonderful and as we wind down the eventful year that has been 2018, my mind is on writing as I begin to plan my theme for 2019. I pinched that term from a James Altucher article and as a long-time goal setter I love the idea of the theme rather than just a series of goals. The word theme implies an underlying conceptual framework for my year and for me 2019’s theme is Words.
I have worked out if I write an average of 1500 words every day from now until December 31, 2019, I will hit the 1,000,000-word mark. This is a bit of a mantra to me; Stephen King says the first million words are practice, the good stuff comes after that. I can already look back and see how much better my writing is now compared to this time last year, even 6 months ago, so I have high hopes for the next 600,000 or so…
Writing words, reading words and learning to polish my word strings into readable stories is where you’ll find me in 2019. I might be beside a pool in Bali or at my own desk in Palm Beach, but that’s what I’ll be doing. I want people to feel things when they read my words because that is my own personal favourite thing about books – how they make me feel.
One of the frustrating things about being a writer (I’m not going to be coy about saying I’m a writer anymore. I am a writer, I have a novel out there in the world for sale, I have this blog that actual real people read and what’s more, I write every day. I may not be a professional writer yet, but I am a writer.) So, one of the frustrating things about being a writer is getting your work out there, getting it in front of eyeballs, but 2019 isn’t going to be about that for me. I’ll continue building my blog, growing my platform of Paris Lovers on facebook (Search @ParisTimeTravel) and research ways to get my words to my readers, but I’m mostly going to follow the advice of just about every professional writer from Stephen King to Liz Gilbert, and Christopher Downing and just write.
You probably haven’t heard of Christopher because he writes mostly under pen-names, but he was recently on Joanna Penn’s podcast so I’m going to take Joanna’s word for it. Dude is a very successful author and dude says the most important thing is to get the books written.
“The ROI on most marketing isn’t that great. You spend 90% of your time and get say a 10% return. If you just focus what little time you have, if you just focus on writing a good books, a bunch of them, that’s where the pay-off is.
That’s what I say about JK Rowling. At the end of the day, she wrote books people wanted to read and that’s the real secret to success.