A lesson on listening.

by Todd Foley

“The writer who possesses the creative gift owns something of which he is not always master.” -Charlotte Brontë

I’ll admit that I’ve been putting off writing a new post until I had time to do so. Until I was ready to articulate some meaningful reflection.

Lately I’ve been so consumed with writing that the last thing I wanted to do was blog. I just finished off a big assignment at work on Monday and have been spending much of my time on my book project, leading up to a *tentative* launch by the end of April. The more I research self-publishing, the more I realize how much work is still ahead of me.

Here’s my typical day: I go into the office early to format a few chapters before the work day begins – during which I write and edit. Every now and then I read up on other indie authors’ experience and advice regarding marketing and promotion strategies, learning what worked best for them. When I’m on my lunch break, I go on a walk and think about what would work best for me and my project. What contacts do I have? Which bookstores/outlets could I ask to help with promotion? Who could I ask for request initial reviews? How can I most effectively expand my online platform?

Then I go back to work. Then I think and strategize more after work.

I’ll be honest: It’s exhausting trying to control everything.

But then I remember what I’m working toward, that I’m doing what I love and that I love what I’m doing. I realize that all is right with the world.

I need to enjoy this journey. Words are powerful and I often struggle to make them work. That’s when I realize I need to sit back and listen to the larger story I’m trying so hard to tell.

To anyone out there following this blog: Thank you for listening to my ramblings as I continue to learn the craft. I’m excited to share my book with you when it’s done. Terrified, but excited.

As a final token of my appreciation, I leave you with this nugget of wisdom from one of my literary heroes.

“Becoming a writer is about becoming conscious. When you’re conscious and writing from a place of insight and simplicity and really caring about the truth, you have the ability to throw on the lights for your reader.” -Anne Lamott