Monday, April 30, 2012

What Does Success Look Like?

I tweeted last week about this question and wanted to expand upon it to begin the new week. How do you define success? Is it being published in a magazine? Recognized as an online authority or book reviewer? Is it landing an agent or that first book deal? Or maybe seeing delight in the eyes of a child as you read during a library visit is your brand of success. How about signing books and a reader tells you how you changed their life? Or answering loads of fan letters praising your characters and story?

All writers have different goals and vision when it comes to success. Just like our story ideas and personalities differ, so do our definitions of success. Many writers who write for children (my chosen age group) seek to impact the life of a child and especially reluctant readers, not pursue super-stardom. Of course, the chance of super-stardom is slim anyway so best to pursue more honorable aims (wink).

I've been reviewing my own ideas of success. My greatest desire is to write something that entertains kids. Building a relationship with an agent for the long-term, someone who "gets" my work and is interested in collaboration, that would be success. I'm not about sales numbers and I'm realistic about writing as a career. Success would be seeing the book about our journey through liver disease and transplant on a bookshelf.

How about you? What does success look like for you?

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