Week of October 30, 2011—Randomness of a Picture Book Author
Monday, October 31—It’s A Sign!
Do you ever feel you’re getting mixed messages about writing picture books? Or that you’re being sent down one path after another?
Or are there times when you feel you’re not getting all the pertinent info? That for some reason everyone else knows what to do or what to avoid on their picture book journey, but no one’s let you in on the secret?
Do you question the motives or reasons behind the advice and guidance you are receiving?
Or do you sometimes feel that maybe someone gave you an answer they thought you wanted to hear?
Sometimes we truly get mixed messages from the picture book signs. When that happens, the only thing to do is to get more information. Think of it as a second opinion. Check another source, ask a trusted writing friend, check another blog, ask another question. If all else fails, go with your gut and follow the path that seems correct. You can always change course at a later time if needed.
Always read the small print. Don’t take a sign about writing that you hear or see at face value. Look deeper. Go deeper. Think deeper. Find the message behind the sign and take heed.
But sometimes you just need to believe the sign. Trust what you see or what you’re told. When it’s clear that the message you’re receiving is honest and truthful (no matter how distasteful), believe it. Don’t fight it. Don’t try to convince the sign its wrong. Believe it.
We all want to live on Awesome Street and be told how wonderful we are. But that’s not the job of the people who make the signs along the picture book writing road. Their job is to show us the signs. If you’re waiting for an editor or agent to tell you, “Wow! You’re really something!” you may be waiting a long time. Awesome Street has an occupancy of one—you. Believe in yourself, then others will see the results.
But you’re not alone in this world of confusing picture book signs. You’re not the only one trying to read the signs. Others are on this journey, too. As you collaborate with other writers and work in critique groups, you’ll be able to stop your sign reading, and get down to the business of writing.
That’s when you’ll be able to find some inspiration and begin to grow toward your true destiny—being the best author you can be (and being published).