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Wednesday, December 20, 2017

Stop and think—do you sabotage your own success? This can happen on many levels, most of them subconscious, but all are self-destructive. How do I know this? I’ve done so many things to make myself fail or at least feel like a failure, I can’t even count them. We can’t address all the ways we writers/artists/creators knock ourselves down, but we can discuss a few. You might be able to add to this list.

What is Your Passion? Mine is writing. I write novels, short novels, short stories, and blogs. Your passion may be writing, as well, but any creative activity counts: painting, photography, quilting, making doll houses, cooking gourmet meals, singing, dancing, playing an instrument--the list is long. Maybe you're like one of my talented friends who writes literary novels, but she also paints and is a wonderful photographer, too.  

Is Your Attitude Positive or Negative? Ever hear the saying: “Can’t never could do anything.” I do admit I often say, “Well, I just can’t do that.” Maybe the statement is in response to rewriting a story that seriously needs an overhaul; to a ten-day blog tour; to spice up a manuscript; to take a workshop that I really need. Instead, be the Little Engine That Could and tell yourself, “I think I can.” Doesn’t that sound much better than “I can’t?”

If you are a writer, is Your Book The Best It Can Be? Does it have reader appeal? Pretend you’re someone else reading your book. (I pretend I’m a lady I know on-line who is rather hard to please—will she like my book?) Does it have urgency, intensity, and enough drama to capture a reader’s heart? Does your own book interest YOU? Remember these principles, and you may just write a Best Seller.

Do You Treat Yourself As Well As You Treat Other Writers? Now, this is simple. If you have a writer friend who is faltering, what do you do? Don’t you try to bolster her confidence, telling her that she is competent, that she is as good a writer as anyone else, and that you have confidence in her? Then, why not tell yourself these things? Then act that way.

Do You Play At Writing Instead Of Taking It Seriously? By serious, I don’t mean act that way. The one thing you DON’T want to do is lose the joy of writing. Why write if it makes you miserable? Remember how excited you were when you first realized you were a storyteller, and you wanted more than anything to succeed? We need some level of obsession to take ourselves seriously and make others believe it, too. If writing is your dream, then make it happen. Write!

If you don't write, apply any of these bits of advice to your own particular talent.
If you'd like to try writing--by all means, sit down at the computer or grab a notebook and pen, and write!

Until next time--

Celia Yeary-Romance...and a little bit 'o Texas


  1. I just went through one of those days yesterday. Managed to get 1,000 words--not my best but they're there. I'd never ever say the things to someone else that I tell myself! Good thing I don't stay in the dumps for long.

  2. Celia,
    All good points!
    Happy Holidays,

  3. Ooh dear... a bit too close for comfort. Thanks for pulling me up on this, Celia. I shall endeavour to be The Engine That Can.

  4. I do stop myself sometimes, but I also was blessed with parents who always told me I could do anything. Then they let me try and supported me while I did. That does help a lot.

    Some really wise advice and I thank you. Doris

  5. Celia, for years I have said I know I can, no matter what my goal was--writing, nursing, volunteering at the shelter, entertaining, whatever. And I've always encouraged others to have that attitude too. But recently I've been in a slump for several good reasons. However, I needed this reminder--it hit me like a pep talk and wake up call. So thank you for the refreshing revival. I hope to enjoy our Christmas with my son and his family and then I'll get back to shaping up and being my old self. Wishing you the happiest holiday season.

  6. Oh, yes, the self-doubt, especially when you are working on one book and another book has been recently been published. And that published one, rolls on its belly and sinks to the bottom of the ocean where the crabs nibble in it. You look at the sales figures and wonder what happened. You go back and re-read it, hoping there's a clue of something-some reason why. Nothing. All the people who read it, declared it the most brilliant book I've written. That's it, self doubt crawls it and grips the mind, the fingers, and the heart. Why do I even bother to write?

    Do I allow my writer friends to think that way? NO!!! But I'll beat myself up and nope for months. Why? I don't know.

  7. Wonderful reminders, Celia. Thank you. Merry Christmas!

  8. Have you been spying on me? Wonderful advice, Celia. Thanks! Happy Christmas!

  9. This post touched some raw places in me in which I struggle. I always wonder when I finish a new story if it tells the story I was really wanting to tell. Even when I rewrite and rewrite the story to make it exactly as I want it, I never quite feel I've accomplished it successfully. I compare myself to others--and, of course, I don't feel I'm as good as they must be. Negative self-talk is a frequent battle for me. I wish I could be like some writers who are filled with self-confidence. These inner demons are what causes me to struggle with writer's block from time to time. So, Celia, your post was a timely message for me. Thank you and Merry Christmas.

  10. Celia,

    It's entirely too easy to slip into the poor, poor pitiful me habit and to compare ourselves to others who seem more successful/prolific/lucky/talented (which might not be the reality at all--but it's our perception). It's a dangerous trap to get caught in. When I realize I'm about to fall into that trap, I step back and give my attitude a swift kick in the rear and get back to the productive business of well...taking care of my own business.

    Merry Christmas to you!!!


  12. I'm guilty on some of those counts. I find lots of things that suddenly must be all done before I settle down to writing.