Wednesday, June 5, 2013

IWSG - Fill the Glass

 Brought to us by Alex J. Cavanaugh, and supported by Sheena-kay Graham, Suzanne Furness, and Laura Eno.

So, I had a few stressful weeks. Somewhere in the midst of them, I stopped writing.

I thought, hey, I can forgive myself for that, right? I mean, it's been stressful, and when I'm stressed, I cuddle with my family, and sometimes blank out the world with a lot of reading (that I don't really have time for, but I do anyway).

But I stopped writing. I stopped writing, when maybe it could have helped me stay a little less stressed.

And when I wanted to start again, I struggled.

It felt like everything was all junk, all . . . well, I stopped swearing 16 years ago and I don't want to start seeing the world through a glass-half-empty outlook again and that's what swearing does to my mind so . . . I won't say what I was thinking.



I realized what I was doing, letting those annoying insecurities eat into my brain and my soul, and I decided to look for ways to fill the glass.

Somehow, I think that decision led to the following events. Or, at least, the fact that I noticed the following events.

That morning, I met a fellow neighborhood walker who is a published author, and for the first time, I told her about my book. She just seems so professional and amazing, that I admit I was afraid to tell her before . . . and she told me she had a tough time marketing for several years before she started speaking at conventions, and having phone interviews with radio stations. She told me to start using e-mail to promote my book - just ten minutes a day, one bookstore, organization, group, radio station, etc. at a time, and then she told me to keep writing.  Her most recent success, Vegan in 30 Days: Get Healthy, Save the World, is on my mom's bookshelf and I've read it, even though I'm not vegan. (and yes, that's a picture of Sarah on the cover)

And then, I met a new friend (or at the very least a kindred spirit), and she and I had this awesome conversation that included homeschooling, classroom teaching (we both like both kinds of teaching), and our passions (she's really into science, I love language arts), and she gave me ideas for marketing my book, and gave me huge encouragement. Wow! (The idea: sending information about my book to each homeschool co-op in the area and ask if I could do an author talk/book signing - there are at least 5 within easy driving distance.)

And if, that wasn't enough to get me started again, I meandered over to my book page at amazon, and thought I could use a little book review uplift (hoping that there were no negative reviews that had popped up in the night), and whoa . . . look a review I hadn't seen before, that somehow I had missed, from the daughter of a friend . . . a five star, seriously sweet review! Wow!

So, I sat down and wrote in my journal. And then, I revised a chapter and wrote a completely new one for Champion in Flight, Draft #2.

I'm back, and I'm filling my glass. Now, there's not question about whether it's half empty or half full.


How do you fill your glass?

22 comments:

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

God knows how to put the right people in our path when we need them! Glad you are recharged and ready to go again.

Rachna Chhabria said...

Glad to see that you have gotten back to writing. Its wonderful when God sends us the right people at the right time.

Tyrean Martinson said...

Alex - He sure does! And yes, I'm ready to write!

Rachna - Yes, it is!

Laurel Garver said...

Marketing can feel very soul-sucking. I'm so with you on that. Thankful that God put encouragers in your path. I've had the same experience recently.

And another helpful thing to keep you writing is an "alpha reader"--someone who keeps you accountable to produce and cheers you on. You keep sending this person pages at regular intervals and they keep telling you they love your work. It helps SO much.

Julie Flanders said...

Yay for filling your glass! And congrats on that excellent review. Loved learning about your friend's marketing techniques, this is something I need so much help with so it's always great to learn from those who have been successful at it.

Glad you're back! :)

Rachel Schieffelbein said...

That's great that you found ways to fill your glass. :)

M. J. Joachim said...

When given the choice, always keep the glass half full. Glad to see you got that 5-star review!

Madeline Mora-Summonte said...

Love that the glass is now overflowing with good stuff! It's sometimes so hard to do, but we really need to try and stay open so the positive and the good can flow into our lives and not be blocked by all the negativity. Thanks for this post - really needed it today. :)

Julie Luek said...

Sounds like you had some appointments with divine interventions just when you needed them.

I've been in a bit of a writing funk this week. I'm trying not to let it panic me but just go with the flow, feed the creative well and trust I will get my writing butt back in gear soon.

Natalie Aguirre said...

Awesome that some people in your life helped you out of your writing slump. I've been feeling stressed lately too and have committed to doing what I can but not putting too much pressure on myself.

Doralynn Kennedy said...

What great marketing tips. I struggle with that too. Thanks for sharing those. Glad you spoke with her about your books that day. She just shared a few ideas and gave you such huge encouragement and motivation. Sometimes we don't know how much our words encourage (or discourage) someone. Best to be an encourager.

Came over from Alex's Insecure Writer's Support Group.

L. Diane Wolfe said...

You just needed a boost from a friend. Or two.

I always try to imagine the glass is overflowing.

Laura said...

Glad your glass is getting filled again! Motivation can come from unlikely places, sometimes :)

Sandy Campbell said...

That was such a nice positive and uplifting post for those of us learning, and the experienced!

Thank you very much!!

sandysanderellasmusings.blogspot.com

M Pax said...

Yay for refilling. This is not easy, and starting is really, really hard. If we keep going, we'll find our way.

ib said...

It's funny (not ha-ha) that I read your IWSG post first. I too, have been having trouble writing but for a much longer period of time, and have now, just started back up again. It feels good to do so, does it not? Now, if I could just find some perseverance somewhere, I could really get down to business.

Brandon Ax said...

These dips happen to all of us. I think it is the love of the story that will always bring us back. So glad you had some people fill your cup for you it always helps. Good luck on the writing.

Mark Means said...

I think we help fill our glass by the people we surround ourselves with...at least, partways.

I have no doubt that your glass is half full because that's how you help fill -my- glass :)

Maurice Mitchell said...

Great job Tyrean! It's the little things that fill the glass and every drop counts.

Nick Wilford said...

A bit of encouragement from lovely people goes a long way. Also, definitely need to keep writing whatever's going on, even if just 100 words a day. I've found it helps me deal with it.

Karen Lange said...

You know, I've done this too, where I get busy with other things and stop writing. My confidence often wavers, and I struggle, and eventually get back to it. It can be an interesting cycle!

Cheering you on with your book promotion! I know you can do it. :)

Happy Weekend!

J.L. Campbell said...

Hi, Tyrean,
I find that when I'm in a slump it's the small things that help to lift me out of the doldrums. Hope you're making good progress.

Have a good weekend.