“You will be successful in everything.”

SNARKY RESPONSE: Okay, first, Fortune Cookie Guru, you no longer “foretell” anything, instead offering only platitudes, and now you’re pandering. Someone, pass me another cookie, at least I can get my sugar fix.

“You will be successful in everything.”

No one believes that one, but I truly believe that you can be successful in anything you pursue with dedication and determination. Granted a measure of “realistic expectation” must be dumped into the mix, but you can’t get there from here without hard work. This applies to all facets of your life, but here I’m talking about writing.

What is success anyway? Is it a measurable point in time or checkbook balance? To be successful, you have to determine first what it is, and then what is involved in getting there.

Does being a successful writer mean being on the New York Best-Seller List? Then, more than likely, you need to chart a course for one of the Big Publishers and build your platform to attract their attention. Very few folks get to the NYBSL without that kind of support.

Does being a successful writer mean being published, period? Then, determine what medium is best suited to your type of writing. Self-publishing doesn’t carry the stigma it once did, but it doesn’t serve the best interests of every writer. Small presses are carrying a lot of water now and could be just the team to take you over the goal line. ePublishing offers versatility and relevance in an electronic age, but is it your final destination or a stepping stone?

All of these venues are valid “end goals” and I encourage you to investigate them all as you plot your course.

For me, the goal is to see my story in print, be it on paper or electronic, and to be judged a good enough writer to be paid for it. Crass, yes, but think about it. If you’ve spent days/weeks/months/YEARS working on something, investing all that time and effort, you can’t be blamed for expecting some recognition.  And what better recognition than to have someone exchange their hard-earned money for it. It’s not crass, it’s about a craftsman being recognized for his trade. And you, my dear writer, are a craftsman, be it prose or poetry, fiction or non, long or short.

Additionally, I would add that any goal you set for yourself (1) is not set in stone–you can change it at any point, it’s YOUR goal after all; and (2) is a moving target in that the outside influences on attainment should be factored and adjusted accordingly. Regularly review your goals, check your target for validity, and then be flexible enough to adjust as required.

Finally, “they” say, “Success is a journey, not a destination.” (I can’t find a definitive citation, but it’s bandied about regularly) While it may sound to the snarky like a cop-out, it’s a valid point. Even if we don’t attain that grand goal, the fact that we continually strive to attain it makes us different from those who don’t even try.

That, my dears, is worth celebrating as much as the rest!

So, how do you measure success?

About Denise Golinowski

I write "Fantasy with a Kiss of Romance" and love reading same. I hope that together we can share our experiences - likes and loves - as we read and I write, together.

Posted on August 13, 2012, in fortune cookie, goals, published, snarky, success, Writing. Bookmark the permalink. 6 Comments.

  1. Another great post, Denise. I like to create some sort of visual board, whenever possible. If I can see it, I can achieve it! Thanks for your inspiration on this wonderful Monday morning.

  2. What an inspiring post, Denise! I used to measure my writing success by what other's said about my work, i.e., friends and family. The fact that I have written a memoir based on my past years in foster care and the adoption process, has affected many of my family members personally, although I do not use their names in the book. But, what they didn't get and still seem not to, is that it was based on MY life experiences and how I perceived them. The attainment of my “grand goal”, to see it in print, is something that I will keep aiming for regardless of how other's feel. It has taken me years to be able to come to that conclusion without feeling guilty or silly about my work. Again, what a wonderful and insightful post!

  3. Thank you for dropping in, Tina! I love the idea of a visual board for goal setting and inspiration. I've a very visual person myself, so this is an idea I'm going to try an implement. If only I had some wall space – too many bookcases LOL Oh! There's always the door…

  4. Hi Stacy! Thank you for dropping by and commenting. I'm so glad to see you taking control of your success. You've done big things with your life and your writing is going to be another big thing. That's the way to Own It!

  5. Denise, a lot of wisdom here, well & thoughtfully written. oh, and i also do enjoy the occasional bit of snarkiness. 🙂

  6. Hi Joanna! I'm glad my snarkiness is working. I'm actually working on developing that trait LOL. I feel I lack a certain dash of style in that arena. Thank you for the kind words about my post and am glad that it proved worthwhile. Take care and see you soon!

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