Treat Your Writing Like Aretha (Give It Respect)

My love of books began at a very young age. As in my first word was "book." My mother tells me I didn't say it as much as sigh it happily. Apparently a book about farm animals inspired me to finally speak. (Props to children's book writers; your work DOES matter.)

Ever since then, I have dedicated my life to books. Whether it is reading them for pleasure, studying them in college, writing about them for book reviews, editing manuscripts for publication, or writing my own novels, I spend most of my time in a world of written words.  

While people may dismiss books as "frivolous" or "unimportant," I have taken them very seriously. Books change lives. If you don't believe me, look at the Harry Potter phenomenon. After reading those books, children have felt less alone and their daily lives have become a bit more magical. The books are so powerful that some children cry when they don't receive a message from an owl on their 11th birthday. 

Your book matters. I don't care if you are writing a self-help book, a young adult novel, or a business book that will help freelancers finally get some income. Your book matters.

I want you to respect your writing dream. I don't care if your mother thinks it is impractical and doesn't get it. I hope you are ignoring your spouse if he or she says that it will never happen. If your brother tells you that you dream is ridiculous, I hope you dismiss his words. Your writing dream deserves your attention and focus, even if the haters overwhelm you.

I know the new year is approaching, and it is the time people make resolutions. I hope one of your resolutions is to finish your book or at least develop a regular writing habit. My wish for you is that you will make 2017 the year that you working on your writing like a boss. 

What might that look like? Here are some ideas for you:

*Write 1,000 words a day

*Hire an editor for your book (instead of waiting for the "perfect time"--we all know that never comes)

*Read more widely in your industry/genre

*Challenge yourself to write your novel in 30 days

*Go to local writing events in your area

*Reach out to your favorite writers to thank them (it is good karma)

*Attend a book/writing conference

*Write a query letter or synopsis

*Finally hire a writing coach so your book gets DONE. 

Whatever resolutions you make this new year, I hope you create one about making your writing dreams come true. My greatest wish for you is that you don't play small anymore (you know, where you don't think your book is worth investing in). My biggest dream is to see your book on the shelf in 2018. And I hope it changes as many lives as possible. 

Need help making a writing resolution? Write your questions in the comments below, and I will point you in the right direction.