The Innkeeper’s Bride is releasing on Jan 14 of this month. That’s amazing to me because this month I have hit a milestone!
On January 1, 2000, I decided to start try writing my first book. As you can imagine it was terrible, and I realized that I needed to learn how to write before I started to write. So I took a correspondence course (anyone remember those?) on writing fiction, joined a writing group, and began to learn the craft of writing. In 2001 I received my first contract for a novella, and I’ve been writing ever since.
So what have I learned over the past twenty years?
- Never ever stop learning about writing. Even though I’ve been writing for a long time and have written a lot of books–over fifty at last count– there is still a lot about writing that I don’t know. Being a constant student of the craft is essential.
- Stay balanced. Don’t let one aspect of your writing career be out of balance with the other. Don’t be overwhelmed by the business to the point of having writer’s block, and don’t ignore things like marketing and networking. A balanced career, just like a balanced life, is both productive and satisfying.
- The publishing business constantly changes. When I first started writing, Internet publishing was barely a thing, I still had to send some of my manuscripts through the mail, and there was no such thing as social media. Now there are numerous avenues to getting published and marketed–which is good, but it can be confounding, too. Just when you think publishing is going to stabilize, something else happens to throw everything off kilter. Being flexible while knowing that change is on the horizon will help you maintain your creativity–and your sanity.
- Persevere. If I had to give only one piece of advice to writers, it would be to persevere. From the slog of writing a novel (especially the middle) to the long wait for a publishing contract (sometimes years–or longer) to the multiple highs and lows that come with a publishing career, always, always persevere. Remember–you’ll never succeed if you give up!
- Develop a thick skin. A writing career is full of joy and disappointments, sometimes more disappointments than joy. Not letting the little things and big things get to you is the key. How do I do that? By remembering that writing books isn’t about me, it’s about entertaining readers. I’m not going to please everybody, and that’s okay. Being content with what I do and doing it to the best of my ability and with integrity is more important than anything else.
To celebrate my twenty years in the publishing world, I’m giving away an autographed copy of The Innkeeper’s Bride. To enter: tell me in the comments one thing you’ve learned in the past twenty years. It can be anything–a new skill, a new way of doing something, a new way to look at things–whatever you’d like to share. I’ll choose the winner on 23rd.
The Innkeeper’s Bride will be available in stores on Jan. 14th! Visit this link for purchasing information.
Congrats on 20 years! I’ve learned how much I love reading books! In 2019 I read 220 books! Looking forward to the Innkeepers bride!
Congratulations on 20 years, Kathy! I’m right up there with you.
What I’ve learned over the last 20 years is to trust God. I tend to panic and try to fix things myself, but the older I get, the more I understand that’s not trusting God to take care of me. While I keep obeying His calling and taking care of what I’m supposed to do, I’m learning to wait on Him to take care of the God stuff that I cannot control anyway.
Congrats on 20 years! I learned that I love to read!
Congratulations on 20 years! So exciting!
I have learned to not be so busy and to slow down and enjoy life!
Congratulations on your twenty years of writing! You are accomplished in so many ways! I feel honored to actually know you!!! Keep up the good work! Best wishes for a great new year!
I’ve learned that gifts of your time, love and kindness mean more to people than purchased things, including yourself. I would have missed out on so many blessings in my life if I had just purchased “things.”
I’ve learned not to jump to conclusions and not to assume anything. The most important sentence I have learned is: “You don’t have all the facts”. When I say this to myself, I can step back and see things from a whole new perspective. This one sentence has changed the way I look at life and people.
Congrats on your 20 yr writing career! This yr will mark a 20 year anniversary, as well. It’ll be my 20th wedding anniversary! As in writing, where there are always new things to learn, so it is with marriage. May God grant us both many more yrs!
Congrat ! I love the inn keepers bride. Can’t wait to see what this year has for you ! God bless!
Congratulations on your 20 year writing career! Your stories are the best! Thank you for letting me be a part of your team!
I’ve learned a lot in the past 20 years! One of the most recent lessons that has truly hit close to home is simply…God’s amazing faithfulness.
Congratulations on your 20 year mark! I enjoy your stories! Thank you for sharing them with us!
I’ve learned that Christian Fiction is a big thing and that there are tons of awesome books available in that genre. It’s a win, win!
I have learned life is short and unsure. Live life, be happy.
One thing I have learned in the past 20 years is that God is faithful and worthy of our trust … always.
Congratulations! I love everything you shared on what you have learned over the past 20 years…thank you!