Got a request from someone who labelled themselves a "future illustrator of children's books". I quickly and gently corrected her that she IS an illustrator of children's books, just not a published one yet. Mentality has everything to do with it, and the words you put out there go a long way towards convincing yourself that it's real. And let's face it, if you don't believe it, no one else will.
I used to think that a writer was someone who was published and has his work read by strangers throughout the world. Then a realized a writer is someone who writes. That's it. Whether or not anyone ever reads what they write, they're still a writer. Being paid or not paid to do it doesn't diminish it.
So if you're just starting out and you're thinking "Someday I'm gonna be a writer" or worse, "someday I'm gonna be a REAL writer", stop right there. Change the words. "I AM a writer. A REAL writer." Then, all you have to do is get someone to read it and buy it to be a published writer.
Oh, and by the way, being a writer is hard work. Never forget that. Writing is re-writing, as someone once said. So don't go thinking that because you're calling yourself a writer or an illustrator that you're set and the magic will start happening. The "secret" to success is perseverance, meaning making mistakes and learning from them, growing in your style, and not just writing and thinking good thoughts. But that's what being a writer means.
So WRITE ON! And don't forget to check out The Varcolac - my on-line ever growing blovel (blog novel)!
I'm starting a new book today with that as the title. "The Strength To Stand Up. Memoirs of an Unemployed Man." People have...
Great time had at the SCBWI conference on Saturday! And a big hello to my friends from that conference who've hopefully joined us here....