Calling All Indie Writers- Success in 2014
by Christina Carson
Yesterday I received a thoughtful blog from Jim Ainsworth, fellow Venture Galleries Authors Collection writer, a group of serious-minded indie authors who blog for Venture Galleries, determined to find a way to success in this brave new world of writing and publishing. Jim refers to the challenge that owns us all—how to translate promotion into sales and sales into a successful career—primarily through internet related media and advertisers. Jim speaks to the change we obviously require since success still eludes most of us. He wonders what that change should be. Sound familiar? He asked for feedback (watch for his blog January 4 on Venture Galleries) and this is what came to me as I looked back over my life.
What creates success in any venture is a combination of two forces:
1. The doings of people.
2. One’s intensity of desire to succeed.
The doings of people in this case are the activities we writers engage in—our writing and promoting and all that entails. If that were all that is needed to succeed then those who have been successful could easily explain their results. The truth is they can only speculate and that made me curious. I’d seen that before, that strange something that caused some deemed terminally ill to survive, some impoverished to rise to abundance, some physically challenged to live extraordinary lives. To try to get a better fix on what that something might be, for years I collected stories of such encounters with life and eventually came to see a line that ran through them all.
My favorite story was of a five-year-old boy sitting one Sunday morning on an old wood pier jutting into one of the many deep, clear cold lakes of western Ontario. He sat next to his three-year-old sister as they emptied a bowl of last night’s popcorn and watched the day begin. They never heard him, his soft pads muffling his approach. Was it his musky scent or the scrape of a claw on the old wood? We’ll never know, for the little boy didn’t remember. But when he jumped up and turned around, the Black bear lumbering toward him on all fours, his eyes level with the boy’s and hardly an arm’s length away, growled and started forward fast. The bear grabbed the little girl, but her brother jerked her back and pushed her into the lake he thought to protect her. The bear sniffed at the boy and appeared to gather that his chances were better with the little girl who was then swimming to shore. The bear jumped in and paddled after her. The boy ran around to help her out at the shore, but the bear kept coming, got out of the lake and moved around them to cut them off from their cottage. The boy stood facing this behemoth and yelled at him. He picked up a stick and smacked the bear in the nose. The bear stopped, sniff the air once again, looked at the boy, then turned and shuffled back into the woods. When asked how he kept his sister from harm, he said in a matter-of-fact manner, “I wouldn’t let him hurt my sister.”
His was that intensity of desire, the one that we have when we entertain no doubt. There is belief and then there is belief beyond a shadow of a doubt. It is that second state that creates what we sometimes wrongly call miracles or success in the face of seeming overwhelming odds. This is the truth I know after all these years: When we know something beyond doubt, it is done. We begin to watch it form around us.
Instead, what I did in 2013 was to allow a sense of confusion and impatience to own me as I stepped into this new world 2 years ago. I forgot that the outer doings are there to keep us involved and focused until we bring ourselves to the state of no doubt. That is there only purpose. If we make poor choices as to which doings we become involved with, letting fear rather than what feels true to direct us, it only makes moving beyond doubt harder to reach. So we must choose wisely what we sense will move us toward success and then focus there until we let doubt go. That’s the project; the only project. It’s our inner world we must alter, not the outer one. In the words of that great sage Kabir:
When the Guest is being searched for,
it is the intensity of the longing for the Guest
that does all the work.
Let’s hear more success stories in 2014, and let yours be one of them.
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