Friday, August 10, 2012

Three tools you NEED for your art

You need three things to keep going in any of the arts:

  • Motivation
It's what makes the world go 'round. If you don't feel like your writing is going to do anything for you personally or for someone else (like a prospective reader), why write? For many of us, the motivation to write is as simple as this: we love doing it. But what motivates you on those days when the love is lackluster? The answer is totally personal, so if you don't have an answer to this question, get one. If all else fails, promise yourself chocolate. 

:)   <-- me after eating chocolate

  • Ambition
I'm not particularly talking about the high-flying ambition that drives people to become valedictorian or MVP. I'm talking about the very basic ambition that drives you to set a goal - any goal - and actually work to reach it. It doesn't have to be glitzy, although allowing yourself a few glamorous dreams can be fun. Ambitious artists are artists who produce because stopping would mean putting a halt on their dreams. So if you don't have a goal, set one. Then tie it to your motivation above. For example, I want to get my middle grade superhero book in shape to publish (ambition) because I wrote it for my sons and can't wait to share it with them (motivation).

  • Enthusiasm
You've probably noticed the link between these three words by now: it's ENERGY. Art requires energy. You need a muse (motivation), a goal (ambition), and a whole lotta love (enthusiasm) to get your project from an idea to a complete work of art. Without enthusiasm, the other two won't quite be able to get you up out of bed to write. Enthusiasm is an intangible, like love. You know it when you feel it. But where do you get it if you've run out? 

Well, that's what Operation Awesome was created for! The writerly blogosphere is a great place to find the enthusiasm you're missing. Another great resource for enthusiasm is writing conferences. There just so happens to be a free, online writing conference next week! 

(If you're interested in the history of WriteOnCon and how it came to be, check out our interviews with its founding members.)

If you're missing one of these elements in your art, I hope you'll take advantage of WriteOnCon, and writing blogs like this one, to help you find your passion and drive again. 

So your homework this coming week is:
  • Set a writing goal (big or small, your choice)
  • Tie it to a motivation (people you love, an audience you want to reach, recognition in publishing)
  • Get excited about it!!!
Happy Friday, Everyone!


  1. You wrote this for me today! I've got the goal and I've got the motivation, I just have to make the time! Saturday!

    1. I was thinking of you as I wrote this! (and myself, of course) We all need a little more of these three things! That's why I love sharing this journey with all of you.

  2. LOL I literally just sat down and set some goals with a writing buddy not even 5 minutes ago :D Great post :)

    1. Woot! Go Michelle! (Folks, this is a lady who already has an awesome book coming out this year!) You're a great example to me, Michelle.

  3. I'm working on this, but right now, it's not helping. I keep telling myself it's going to be okay, but sometimes my emotions get the the better of me. And sometimes it's easier to let them win.

    1. We're here for you, Inky! I hope to see you around WriteOnCon August 14-15th!


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