I'll be honest. Life as a writer can suck. Especially if you're an unknown. How do you keep optimistic when no one cares who you are?
The only thing I can say is I look to certain authors for inspiration. For me, it's Sherrilyn Kenyon and Josh Lanyon, although there're others. Every time I read Sherrilyn's RWA speech, it makes me cry. I've had the pleasure of meeting her twice, and I told her I wanted to be like her when I grew up. She is freaking awesome.
Josh Lanyon? If I had half his energy, I'd be more productive. Damn, he makes me feel like a slacker. But he also motivates me to keep writing, so it's all good.
When I first started writing, I was told I'd fail, never amount to anything. I refused to believe that. If Stephen King, J K Rowling and others achieved success, why couldn't I? Sure, there're people who want me to fail, including fellow writers whom I thought liked my writing and had my back. To learn they didn't hurt. A lot. But I try to focus on those who are supportive, like the authors in the Kentucky Independent Writers group, my local Sisters in Crime chapter, and fellow writers Amy McCorkle and Missy Goodman. And I'm developing relationships with local publishers, which I hope will have a positive outcome.
Let's talk about the vision board.
And it's not inclusive. That's the one thing about goals. They change. But here's what mine are:
Final or win the Claymore.
Be interviewed and/or reviewed in Mystery Scene.
Be an author signing at the Southern Kentucky Book Fest. (Being on a panel would be a plus.)
Visit New Orleans
Have a radio play produced. I love old radio plays.
Attend Thrillerfest and qualify for a membership in ITW.
Work with the following actors: Benedict Cumberbatch, Martin Freeman, Kevin Whately, and Laurence Fox.
Win a RITA and an Edgar.
Be a bestselling NY Times author.
Are the goals realistic? No. Are they achievable? Hard to say. Sure, some of them are what you could call "pipe dreams," but one might as well have fun if one's going to dream big.
Now to get to work.