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We all know that maintaining a positive attitude is the healthiest way to live. But as writers, we face unique frustrations and fears that can threaten to block our path to becoming published authors.
Rather than stuffing these negative emotions down—or stuffing yourself by stress-eating doughnuts—recognize that all emotions are essential for your mental health. Life is full of setbacks, but learning to cope with the not-so-sunny emotions that follow can turn them into fuel for your creative fire!
Feeling Blue (or Green, or Angry Red)? Turn Negative Emotions Into Jet Fuel For Publishing Success!
FRUSTRATION: When your laptop crashes, taking four hours’ worth of writing with it, frustration (and a few choice curse words, for some of us!) is the natural response. Frustration can also fuel your determination to stick to your goals, even when you find those goals blocked.
Literary agents aren’t beating down your door for your novel? Consider submitting excerpts from your book as short stories or essays, and build publishing credits. Or have your novel critiqued to see if it needs more work before sending it out again.
HELPLESSNESS: If you’re feeling helpless and overwhelmed by your daily tasks and don’t have the time or energy to research countless markets for your writing, turn things around by delegating the hours of research to people who know how to get results.
At Writer’s Relief, we’ve been successfully researching and targeting literary markets for our clients for over twenty-two years—and we love what we do! We have publishing industry insider info that allows us to find you the best opportunities to get your work published.
We are currently accepting creative writing submissions of books (novels, memoirs, etc.), short stories, poetry, and creative nonfiction (personal essays). Submitting your work to our Review Board is easy, free, confidential, and incurs no obligations.
If our Review Board finds your writing sample meets our qualifications, our experts will work to develop a submission strategy that’s personalized to YOU.
Want more opportunities to be a published author in 2017?
The time to act is NOW.
Submit your work to our Review Board today!
SADNESS: Social psychologist Joseph F. Forgas has found that periods of sadness make us pay more attention to external details, leading us to become more in tune with ourselves, our emotions, and our surroundings. By tapping into that awareness, you may discover a deeper, more detailed worldview—which can only strengthen your writing.
ANXIETY: Nothing cures a bad case of anxiety better than taking action. You may be anxious about a deadline, worried that you’ve chosen the wrong career, or frozen with fear as you wait to hear from literary agents or editors. Focus your energy on taking steps to allay these fears with small, attainable goals, and turn that fear into accomplishment!
JEALOUSY: Jealousy can be useful when you use it to study the techniques another writer has used successfully. There are two types of jealousy—one is spiteful (envy) but the other is based on admiration and respect, and that can provide a boost of inspiration for your own writing. What writer couldn’t use an injection of inspiration?
And while we’re at it…
Avoid the temptation to overgeneralize your situation. If you received ten rejection letters last month, it does NOT mean you’ll never, ever publish a short story. (Read more about how to respond to rejection.)
Identify and then control negative emotions. You may say, “I am hurt by the critical remarks of a book reviewer.” Allow yourself to experience the hurt feelings, but then take a deep breath and lay out a plan to overcome the emotion. This might include evaluating the merit of the criticism and possibly taking steps to revise your novel or your approach to your next book.
Focus on the positive. Anger, frustration, and guilt are part of life, but they are also a drain on mental energy. Who needs that? Better to channel that energy into something positive and focus on the success of your process instead of the setbacks and obstacles every writer faces.
At some point, every writer struggles with negative emotions, but successful writers find ways to overcome the writing blues.
“There can be no rainbow without a cloud and a storm.” John H. Vincent
QUESTION: What is one way you turn negative emotions into positive results?