Welcome Karen and thank you for guesting on my blog:
How do you know if you’re Good Enough?
What advice would you give to a college freshman these days? Recently I had the honor of speaking to aspiring writers at a Manchester University career expo and I wanted to be honest without quelling anyone’s creative spirit. I only had a few minutes with each batch of students before they visited another table, so I offered statistics: 85% of people feel that they have a book inside of them (according to the New York Times) yet only 1% of authors make a full-time living at writing (according to my agent).
“But that doesn’t mean you should stop writing! It’s just that if you depend on book sales to pay the bills, it can kill the joy.” Clad in a fedora and trench coat, one girl smiled and nodded at this. Many of the students, dressed in jeans and button-down shirts, already had critique partners and understood that finding a publisher would be daunting. They seemed wise yet still enthusiastic.
One lanky boy waited until the crowd left then quietly asked, “How will I know if I’m good enough?” My heart went out to him. That’s a question with which every writer struggles. Without reading a sample of his work, I couldn’t give him the answer for which he probably longed. Wanting to offer him encouragement, I took a breath. I assured him if he worked hard at his craft and was open to critiques, then he would become “good enough.”
On my drive home, I realized that writing is a lot like parenting. Many people try it but few truly excel. We raise a child because we love them—not because of money. And sometimes after a snap decision or losing our temper, we silently worry, “Am I good enough?”
I believe if we surround ourselves with other parents doing their best and seek advice when needed, we can confidently answer that question. We are good enough because we want it badly enough.
Whether it’s writing or parenting, give it your all. Do it even though it’s hard. Do it even though people will criticize you. Do it out of love.Amazon US and Amazon UK
Visit Karen at her website to find out more about her on www.karensnovels.com