Is your writing going way too well? Confidence high? Productivity off the charts? Well, I’m here to help. Here are 10 easy steps for knocking your writing career into the dirt.
- Make excuses for not writing. (FYI: social media, making “mood boards,” household chores, and shopping for cute notebooks are all good excuses.)
- Refuse to share your manuscript with anyone who can help you edit/strengthen it (critique groups, fellow writers, etc.), and then send that unedited first draft to your dream agents. They’ll be happy to edit it for you, because they have copious amounts of free time. Copious.
- Take rejection personally, like publishing isn’t a business based on salability, but a personality contest (and the mean girls hate you).
- Don’t read books in your genre. Watching TikTok videos is more relevant.
- Order books on writing craft, then leave them sitting, unopened, on your bookshelf. (A personal favorite of mine!)
- Trash-talk agents and editors who reject your manuscript. They will rethink their position and offer you a deal right away.
- Start flame-wars with other writers, because their fans will immediately want to become your fans, too.
- Waste time trying to build followers with “follow me and I’ll follow you back” posts, because those fair-weather followers are totally going to translate into book buyers. Especially the insecure Russian bots. Those bots buy books all the time.
- Don’t belong to writing organizations or attend online or in-person workshops and conferences or follow publishing industry blogs and websites, because you definitely don’t want to understand how the publishing industry works. Bonus: you also don’t want or hear agents, editors, and self-published authors talk about ways you might become successful in this complicated, changing, competitive, exhausting industry.
- Don’t think of yourself as a writer. Just because you’re spending blood, sweat, tears, and hours of your life building words into stories doesn’t mean you’re a writer. It obviously just means you’re an imposter. A real writer spends blood, sweat, tears, and hours of their life building words into stories. Duh.
There you are. Congratulations. You’ve now learned how to sabotage your writing career. Hopefully, you’re doing at least one of these right now. If not, you’d better buckle down and get to it. Your writing career won’t derail itself, now, will it?