So, you're done with it. You've gone through the rewriting and revising stages and your novel (or memoir or short story collection or romance or mystery or article) is finished. Concluded, finalized, ended, done!
Otherwise known as getting your work out in the world. Maybe you'll be seeking an agent, or sending it to editors at smaller houses, or submitting to magazines. It doesn't matter what your plans are at this point (I'll be discussing the mechanics of getting your work out in the world on Friday).
What matters most is your mindset.
Before you research agents, ponder websites of publishing houses, peruse writer's market lists, before you do anything, you've got to get your head on straight.
Because if you've got any doubts about the project, are lacking in confidence about it, or believe in your heart of hearts that it still needs more work, you're going to face an uphill battle. Our beliefs are what block us. And they are also what set us free. So take a look at the following handy Mindset Checklist.
My book (or article) is the best it can be. I've done everything I can on it until I get the professional advice of an agent who wants to represent me or an editor who wants to buy my project.
I bless the publishing world. Instead of cursing the publishing world for its excesses, or lamenting the fact that its changing before our very eyes, I am ready to bless it for all its wonderful quirkiness instead. Because this simple act alone is paradigm-changing.
I'm ready to put myself out there, too. There's more to marketing than my book. There's…me. And I understand that I, the author, am a vital part of the equation these days. I am ready to write a blog, sign up on Twitter, and create myself a page on Facebook. I am ready to engage.
I don't take rejection personally. I understand that a magazine editor might love my article, but have run a similar one last issue. I get that an agent my love my novel, but not feel she can sell it. I know that there could be a million and one reasons why I've been rejected, and not a one has to do with the quality of the work.
I am willing to do whatever it takes. I'm going to hang in there for the long haul. And when my hand-selected agent decides not to represent me, I'll send queries out to 20 more. When I've exhausted every angle of the publishing world, I'll research print on demand options.
I am open to all options. Even though my vision of publishing a book includes a top-notch agent, a big New York publishing house, and a glamorous book tour, I'm willing to hold that intention while remaining open to other options. Because, who am I to manipulate and control the world?
If you can say yes to all of these things, you're ready baby. Go for it. And come back here to report your success.
Brain photo by jkt_de, fro Everystockphoto.