Read Jennifer Castle

Tuesday, March 6th, 2012 - Blog, Books For Writers

At Jennifer Castle’s blog she writes six lessons on her book’s six month anniversary. Her advice is thoughtful and heartfelt – good to keep in mind for those of us with a book out! I’ve copied her last two points here, but check out her website for the full post because its great – and her novel is absolutely terrific too.

Jennifer Castle:

5) There are many different measures of “success.” Way, way more than sales reports, or awards, or average user ratings. It’s so much simpler than that. There’s the one where you finally get to hold your finished book in your hand, and the one where you first see it on a bookstore shelf. There’s having someone tell you in person how much they loved the read, and the bookseller placing the thing front and center because they believe in it so passionately. Then, of course, there are the e-mails from readers telling you your book helped them deal with something tough in their lives, and then the other ones simply thanking you for writing it. (And now here I go choking up again.) When it all shakes down, the ultimate measure of success, I’ve learned, is that I’m able to continue doing what I love most. It feeds my soul and keeps my fingers on the keyboard.

6) In the end, it’s still about the writing. Yeah, as an author there’s a whole lot of other stuff I need to do, and it’s all fun and good and scary-addictive. But then I have to remind myself that no amount of Twitter followers or bookstore events or promotional brilliance is going to matter if I write crappy books. When all of the above has been lived through and learned from, it comes down to the place where I started: the work itself. This is the single most important thing I can give…and I plan to give good.

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Illustration by Julie Larocque.