Sunday, June 27, 2010
"Goals" - a guest post by author, LILA DARE
When I started writing full-time almost six years ago, I had my gaze firmly set on publishing a mystery. I tend to be goal oriented—some friends might use the terms “control freak,” or “Type A poster child,” but I’m pretty sure they mean it in a good way. So, “Write a good book” was too amorphous a goal. How would I know if it was “good”? Why, if someone published it. So my goal became “Have a publishing contract on a book within two years.” Mwa-ha-ha. That’s the sound of the publishing gods laughing at my hubris. Two years came and went and I had a completed manuscript, but no agent and no publishing contract.
So I worked on the manuscript some more and started a sequel. Agents began requesting the whole manuscript (especially after I cut about one-third of it) and I finally signed with a wonderful agent. Hallelujah, I thought. I might be behind my time-line a tad, but I was within sight of my goal of publishing a book. Cue evil laughter. My agent was unable to sell the manuscript she signed me on and it took another two years for us to land a contract, a three-book deal for the Southern Beauty Shop series, the first of which, Tressed to Kill, debuted in May.
Enough. It’s time for a new goal. Yes, it’s fuzzy and no, I can’t quantify it, but I’m as okay with that as I can be. Here it is: Write a good book. That’s it. No riders about time-line, sales figures, or getting starred reviews. I’m posting it over my computer right now. Oops . . . I’ve already added a sub-goal: Enjoy it.
You can visit Lila Dare at http://www.liladare.com/.