I couldn't be more excited for her if she were my neighbor. My philosophy is that when someone else wins it's just proof that I can too. However, I'm not a regular lottery player, not because I have any compunctions about gambling or spending my money unwisely (I don't think the $1 ticket price will break my budget even if I did it twice a week) but because I just forget to buy the ticket. I'm not sure this woman's success will change my habits very much, at least not regarding lottery tickets.
But it has made me take a second look at my habits regarding submitting my work. I tend to submit in spurts and when rejections come back I stop submitting for a while. Intellectually I know that I should send out a new query for every rejection or painfully slow response (which usually equals no response), but I don't. I won't embarrass myself by admitting the pathetic, self-pitying reasons I don't because they don't matter anyway. What matters is that I start sending out again.
Well, if this woman can buy the same lottery numbers for six years in a row, I can certainly keep submitting my books for at least half that length of time. After all, the responses take longer than the two to three days it takes to know if you have a winning ticket. So from that logic I should be sending the books out for at least twelve years.
Sounds good and it brought to mind the advice I got second hand from bestselling paranormal author Kresley Cole, which is:
* If you're set on publishing, then don't dabble. Decide if you're in or you're out. Then do whatever it takes to achieve your goals. I had a "25" plan. At any given time, I would have my writing out in 25 myriad forms-either contests, critiques, agent queries, publisher queries, etc. I believe you have to jump in with both feet.
That's my goal for 2011, even though at this point it seems it will take more time and money than I might have available. If I can't do "25" then maybe I'll start with "12." I think the main point is to always have something out there,
If you're career isn't moving as quickly as you'd like, you might want to think about doing the same, no matter where you are in. If you're a beginner, get your work out to reading group and find critique partners. More advanced? Put contests, agents, and editors on your lists. Published but want to go to the next level -- start putting your work out there again..
This Fort Mohave woman's win reminded me that it's true -- you can't win if you don't play. And playing sure paid off for Kresley Cole. Maybe it will for us.