So, a few months back I went to a 1-day Dave Ramsey EntreLeadership event (more on that in another post). It was a motivational class for people who wanted to learn more about owning their own business. But I figured it probably applied to writing, too, since working on a book is usually a solitary event, no set hours, no boss looking over your shoulder and telling you to write more.
One of the first things he talked about is why people don’t following their dreams: simple fear. Fear of opposition, yes. Fear of failure, sure. But also fear of success, fear of making the wrong decision, fear of other people’s opinions. As you already probably know, fear will paralyze you. You won’t write. Maybe you’ll feel guilty about that & beat yourself up, but still you won’t write.
Here’s what Dave suggested: Keep moving forward even if it’s only in bite-sized chunks. Here’s what I say: If you keep making the decision to write, to show up every day and work, even if it’s only a sentence or a paragraph at a time, eventually the fear will lessen and will probably subside altogether. You’ll find yourself writing for longer and longer stretches. Hopefully, you’ll find yourself looking forward to sitting down and working. Eventually, you may even miss hanging out with the characters even if they’re only real in your head.
He also talked about looking at options and the worst-case scenario. So what’s the worst thing that can happen if you spend an hour working on your book (you had fun, you learned something, you wasted your time)? Okay, so what options do you have if you think your writing stinks (hire an editor, take a writing class, join a writing group for feedback)? What’s the worst thing that could happen once your book is done (you don’t find an agent, you do find an agent, critics hate it, critics love it & you have to come up with something just as brilliant the next time around)? What options do you have if you can’t get it published (self-publish, put it in a drawer & work on another to hone your craft, give it as a gift to your friends/family). Dave’s point was that if you take the time to make a list of your fears, walk through what could (not will) happen & have a list of options available so you don’t feel trapped/stuck, you can nearly get rid of all fear.
Hope this helps you. Happy writing!
So this one is easy, easy, easy. It’ll probably take you all of 15 minutes to put together. Depending on how much each person eats, it’ll feed 6-8 people. Cost is less than $20, the majority of that is for the pork.
- 5-6 pounds pork roast or pork ribs (boneless is easier, but bone-in will work, too)
- 1/2 tsp – 1 tsp. salt (depending on how salty you like it)
- Put the pork in the crock pot.
- Add just enough water to cover.
- Add salt.
- Cook on HIGH for 8 hours.
- Drain in a strainer (pull out any bones & fat at this point and discard)
- With a fork, stir and separate the meat until it looks like strands.
- Put the meat back into the crock pot.
At this point, make one of two choices:
- Add your favorite BBQ sauce and stir; heat on LOW for another 30-45 minutes. OR
- Use the BBQ sauce recipe below.
BBQ SAUCE RECIPE:
- 1/3 cup chopped onion
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- 1 cup ketchup
- 1 cup chili sauce
- 1 tbsp mustard
- 2 tbsp balsamic vinegar
- 2 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
- 1/2 tsp. pepper
- 1 tsp salt
- 3 tbsp packed dark-brown sugar
- 1 cup liquid honey
- Combine all the above ingredients in a saucepan.
- Bring to a boil then turn down the heat.
- Simmer for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- Pour over pulled pork in crock pot and stir.
- Serve immediately by itself or on a bun.
Well, I can write about this one because I took the last 2 months off to work on turning my first novel into an e-book. I sat down the other day to start writing my latest novel & couldn’t remember where I’d been, which character was doing what, & any thoughts I might’ve had about the story. Just gone after all that time.
When I did readings, I used to get asked, What’s the most important thing for a writer to do? In my opinion, it’s to show up every day and write. Consistency’s a big part of it. Sure, some people like to write in spurts & take days off in between. If that works for them or for you, fantastic. But, for me, I found that if I work every day, even if it’s only for a few minutes (i.e. jotting down a couple notes or simply writing a paragraph), I make much more progress. Why? Because the story’s always fresh in my head; the ideas are flowing and seem to come more frequently when I’m thinking daily about the book.
Time’s a problem for some people. I’ve got kids, a house, a lawn, a husband, and a job, too. But you don’t need a lot of daily time to work toward a goal. All you need is a commitment. It’s like anything, I guess, if you want it to grow, you have to nurture it along. I wrote the majority of my first novel, Small as a Mustard Seed, in one-hour increments late at night when my baby was sleeping. It took me four years, but at the end of it, I had a book. If you show up & do the work, so can you.
Grand Prize Winner, Grant Winner, & Silver Medal Winner