My thoughts on writing tips found online and in published works (with some random thoughts thrown into the mix).

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

A to Z Challenge: U

U is for...Undiscovered! For artists of any kind, this is a very descriptive and powerful word that can bring motivation, disappointment, or excitement. Are you the type who finds it disheartening to think of yourself as "undiscovered"? Then you need a new outlook, my friend!

The best way to think of it is to be positive. For a word such as this one, there are two parts, "un" and "discovered." The first part, "un", means not. It can also reverse the meaning of the word proceeding it. In this case, it means that undiscovered means "not discovered" or "the opposite of discovered." The great part to keep in mind is that there is an entire world of possibilities open to reversing it again, and turning you from undiscovered into discovered!

The big thing is to refuse to get discouraged. If you haven't been accepted by a company yet, or if your work has been rejected, take a step back and look at your strategy. Are you only sending to big-name companies? Does your work fit their mission? Are you keeping in touch with them, so they know you as a person, not just a submitter? Have you eliminated some possibilities that might deserve a second look? It might be time to think outside the box and open up your options.

Don't ever give up! If you get turned away 101 times and decide to push your manuscript to the wayside, you are losing the chance to have your 105th or 120th submission accepted! At the same time, you have to know when you are getting stressed and when it might be time to take a break. After you have received what seems like your millionth "no thank you" letter, see if there is another piece in your arsenal just itching to get published, and take a break from submitting your current piece. Or even take a few days or a week off from submitting and let yourself have some breathing room to regroup and regain your energy.

The best advice I can give, though, is to reach out. If you have a favorite artist, ask them how they got started. If your blogging body just recently got published, ask them how they made it through and get the real, down-to-earth story about how they finally pushed it through. Use others to keep your spirits up and remember that some very famous artists (such as Shakespeare!) were never discovered during their lifetime.

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