"Required reading" for today's smart writer.

"Required reading" for today's smart writer.
Information & inspiration to hone your craft and increase your cash...Since 2009

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

How to Stay Motivated...til the Money Comes

One of the biggest tests of a writer's commitment to his craft is the area of finances.
Let's face it: it's hard to stay the course when yo' money is funny.
And the stress over unpaid bills and uncollected invoices is bound to cause your muse to go M.I.A.
 Am I right here? 
 Money is indeed a motivator.

Which accounts for why many of us get down in the dumps and disappointed when our in-come doesn't match our out-put.
We find that this line of work is very different than being in the corporate arena, where we are paid an hourly wage to compensate us for our daily efforts. This can be challenging.
As a best-selling book title once reminded us: "do what you love and the money will come later."

In this spirit, (and as a veteran who has struggled with these issues over the years), I offer the following tips to keep you moving forward, and to help you stay grounded.

Tips to inspire and encourage...
  1. Progress can be just as validating as pay sometimes. Take inventory. Did you recently break into a new market? Work on a project you're proud of? Write your first query? Sign up for a new class to enhance your skills? Enter a contest? Celebrate! There is honor in honest effort.
  2. Remember, you never know who is reading your work. Even when we're not making money, we can make an impact. We can be influencers. We can champion important causes. Here's a case in point. Last week my stats were down. And my spirits were a little low too. Then I got a random email from a publisher who found my blog, through a guest post I had done many moons ago. To make a long story short, she praised me for my great work here at Pen and Prosper, and asked to feature me at her site. It made my day. Sometimes "influence" is just as important as "affluence."
  3. Think like a gardener. There's a reaping season and a sowing season. Just like with writing. What you "plant" today could very well manifest into a bountiful harvest---next week, next month, or next year. But you won't know if you quit too soon. Keep growing.
  4. Hone your craft to increase your cash. One reason that writers sometimes "plateau" is that they fail to learn new things or experiment with different genres of writing. Don't be one of them. Read. Study. Apply. Invest in yourself. Find a mentor. Be a life-long learner.
  5. Pray. When all else fails.

Hopefully these tips will inspire you to have a terrific, progressive Tuesday. Carpe diem!

Thoughts? Agree or disagree?
Which tip resonates with you?

Image: Freedigitalphotos.net


  1. It is most encouraging to read this post.
    I understand about artistic endeavors since I managed to survive as an actor for 40 years under my stage name Carlos Romano,(may be googled).
    Anyway, in this new stage in life I started my blog with intention of creating a record of micro stories for future publication.
    And I've been writing these in my blog themicrostories.blogspot.com
    , but now I feel the novel should be published first, so i'm willing to start.
    Or should I proceed to juice the microstories since they are over 400 of these edited in two languages?

    1. Hi Carlos,

      How lovely to hear from you again today. Glad you were encouraged by these thoughts. Which project you should pursue first depends upon your goals. But given your background, I'm betting either one will be a winner. :-)
      Thanks for weighing in and starting us off.

  2. Jennifer--#1 and #2 especially resonate with me. We DON'T know who our readers are at any given time. That means we have to always showcase our best work.

    1. Sioux,

      True, right? :-) Thanks, as always, for sharing your input.

  3. Yes, I agree! You never know who sees your work; this is a great reason to put your best writing foot forward. :) They are all good points but number 3, especially, is one I try to remember in challenging times.

    1. Thanks, Karen. Glad you were "motivated" to stop by today and share with us. :-)

  4. All these points are great. They come into play for me when I try to evaluate my progress in writing.

    1. Hi there, quietspirit,

      Great to reconnect. It's good to be able to look at our writing with an eye toward progress, right? :-) Thanks for adding to the mix.

  5. I like the Gardner analogy, planting seeds. Developing & Growing, for example writing blogposts, than looking in the Most Popular List, what posts become the most popular.

    Something that can give possible new Inspiration & Ideas for writing new blogposts, and creating opportunities for making progress.

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