Met my deadlines…now what?

So I’ve been pretty quiet here, but I had two deadlines to meet. The first for my blog writing course and the second for the Daily Mail writing competition, both of which I managed to meet comfortably, so I was pretty proud of myself.

For my blog writing course, I obtained 86% across the whole course, which I was really pleased about. Hopefully the knowledge I have gained there will help me on this blog and my future endeavours.

I can’t begin to describe my nervousness and stress surrounding submitting the newly rewritten opening of Latest Mistake for the Daily Mail competition. I went backwards and forwards in my mind so many times- my motivation, my drive has been low recently and there was a time when I asked myself was all this effort even worth it? Fortunately, I am pleased to report, I actually experienced a bit of fire in my belly, a bit of excitement. It will be worth it, whether I get lucky here or not, as I’ve reworked the opening, I can try with other agents, or consider self-publishing. Either of these options is fine. Failure and success is not so easily defined; I need to remind myself of that more.

I just want to say a big thank you to two of my friends, Alexandra and Mish, for proof reading the new chapters- I couldn’t have done this without either of you.

The winner of this competition should be announced in June. So I’ve decided to try my best and throw myself in with more agents and then in the summer, after finding out where I stand, make a decision about what I want to do. Self-publishing is looking more and more appealing and I have effectively drawn up a rough strategy of what I would do, how I would market and manage myself. There would be a lot of control there, but the responsibility would be big, no one would be selling me but myself, I’d have to really put the work in to be noticed.

Then again, I could win. I’m nervous to be optimistic or positive in my thinking after so many disappointments, but it could happen, I have just as much chance as the next hopeful. Nothing to do but wait now.

I recently watched an amazing Ted Talk my husband shared – I guess you guys have noticed I like Ted Talks?

This woman is a real inspiration. When she talks about feeling like a fraud, or like she shouldn’t be at her job, shouldn’t be at college, I found myself profoundly moved. I often feel that way about my job, particularly as I fell into it really, I have no marketing background. I also often feel that way about writing too, like I’m kidding myself, but I have knowledge and some skill and most importantly a story and voice. These things are not nothing.

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