Three Mantras That Keep the Words Flowing
Updated: Apr 7
I've been so lucky to have another article featured in this week's Red Sneaker Writer's Newsletter! Check it out:
This time the newsletter is graced with another article from one of my favorite writers, Betsey Kulakowski. She not only writes terrific books but has a killer work ethic and generates fabulous work with a regularity that I find impressive. The fourth novel in her Veritas Codex paranormal suspense series, The Monk's Grimoire, releases this week. This article explains how she keeps the words flowing.
How many times have you doubted your abilities as an author? You may have heard it described as imposter syndrome; the fear that you’re just not good enough. I have to admit, I suffer from it. I know I have grown as an author over the years, but it doesn’t’ keep doubt from plaguing me. But I have a few mantras that keep me from losing my mind and help me overcome that nagging little voice that pops up every once in a while. My first mantra is “I. Don’t. Quit.” I have been writing since I was six-years-old. Like many of you, I’ve gone back and found some of my early writing and I’ll admit some of it — okay, a lot of it — was horrible. But it was a lesson. Lessons-learned are never a waste of time. They call that having grit. Grit is a tenacious strength to hold tight, dig in and push back when it matters most.” Author Angela Duckworth wrote in her book “Grit” that achievement is more than just talent and grit is about passion and perseverance. Her research has demonstrated that grit has twice the impact on success than academic achievement. My second mantra is “I write every day.” (Hm. Maybe you’ve heard that before. I wonder where?) I’ll admit, there are days where my writing is devoted to my day job. There are days where I only write five words, but there are also days when I can gin out 20,000 words. It’s about balance. On the really good days, I get lucky and use all the right words and get them all in the correct order. Bonus! Where does that get me? I wrote The Veritas Codex for practice. Every book I’ve written since are still just for practice. Why? Because I learned something about myself with every single manuscript. I learned to never give up. And my final mantra is “Be efficient.” I work a full-time job. I also have a family and a home. I have a lot on my plate, so I learned to make the most of my day, and to protect my writing time fiercely. I write in the evening and on weekends while my husband is watching television or while waiting for the marching band to take the field in the middle of the football game (maybe my other mantra should be “I can write anywhere.”). I don’t have time to waste. I started doing NaNoWriMo about six years ago and discovered writing 50,000 words in 30 days was something I could do in my spare time. When I got my publishing contract, I had four or five books in The Veritas Codex Series already in the first draft phase. One day, I got an idea for a book I could plug into the middle of those early drafts. On a cool, and rainy Memorial Day weekend I took my laptop, iPad, and a pot of coffee out to the patio and I sat down and started writing. Over that 3-day weekend, I wrote half of what is now, The Monk’s Grimoire. I finished the entire first draft in 24 days. Edits might take a bit longer when you power through a manuscript like that, but you can’t edit a blank page. The trick is for you to find your own mantra or mantras. What keeps you going when you’d rather quit? What inspires you to put pen to paper? Write them down where you can see them. Write them on your heart … just keep writing!
DON'T FORGET, MARCH1st is the Publication date for The Monk's Grimoire, Book 4 of The Veritas Codex Series! You can pre-order your copy today!! Just visit your favorite bookseller, Amazon, Kindle, Google, Barnes & Noble, Kobo, etc. - and if you enjoy it, please be so kind as to leave a review, or a rating. We're trying to get reviews for The Jaguar Queen and The Alien Accord, too, so if you haven't had a chance to leave a review, please do! I appreciate it more than I can say!!