Isn’t that old fashioned.
Dare I say, years.
Creating. Honing. Crafting. Editing. Exploring.
One’s own purpose. One’s craft as a writer. One’s ability to understand who they hope to reach, and how. And what they hope the effect of that connection will be. The legacy of the work.
Old fashioned to send a thank you letter in the mail, instead of merely “favoriting” a tweet.
To send a long email response to a Facebook post.
To ask to meet for coffee instead of having a phone call.
To focus less on gaming an algorithm (be it Amazon or Google), and more on publishing when it makes sense to you, the author.
To measure value in generations, not daily sub-genre bestseller lists.
To become AWARE of trends, of tools, of new opportunities, but not allow them to drive all of your actions. To balance the new, with the old, in a way that is personal to your challenges, and your goals.
To realize that “best practices” are often simplified lists of things that work only 30% as good as they used to.
And that enthusiasm is a better driver for action that skepticism.
That the demons you must battle to create and share your work lie less in understanding the ins and outs of metadata or social media or blog tours, and more in the bad habits you won’t give up, the excuses you cling to because they protect you from ancient fears.
That sometimes, you are your own worst enemy – that the battle is internal – and not with some external “changing face of publishing trends.”
But that you are also your greatest opportunity to do what matters most: to write, to express, to connect, to create something that becomes ALIVE in the life of another. That regardless of the type of writing you craft and share, it is filled with infinite possibilities in what it becomes to someone else. How a small quote from deep within your novel can ring in the mind of a reader years after they first read it, and how it helps them through a difficult time.
How a story becomes a moment to someone. An insight. And eventually, an action.
That the sale of a book, or an Amazon review is not the measure of success. That the value of your work is not measured in stars. But instead, value is measured in moments you will never know about; moments in the lives of your readers that are so private, they could never consider sharing it with anyone.
That you can prepare for success, but never plan for it. And that your success will always be a group activity, filled with moments of pride, but many more moments of sheer luck.
The body of work.
Which is slow. Which takes time. Which is a lifetime of effort.
That your journey as an author.
And how your work connects with and shapes the lives of readers.
As old fashioned as this may be.
Is why you do this.
And that we, the readers, thank you for it.