That title is moderately self-indulgent. I’m 5’1”. I’m a big (pun totally intended) fan of small things.
But there is value in them! Little goals, little victories, little accomplishments. Every one has worth and purpose and should be celebrated.
You know the old riddle/saying/quote (let’s just be real, I have no idea what it should be called and frankly I’m lucky I can remember to recite it correctly… or can I?) that asks, “How do you eat an elephant?” The answer is, naturally, “One bite at a time.”
Now this had been an inspirational adage for a long, long time, but recently has come under some fire. I, however, remain a believer. Because the road to success, to your goals, to the very dreams that propel you through the hum-drum – and sometimes really crappy – days is paved with the satisfaction that comes from focusing on the small steps you’ve taken toward the ultimate prize.
- You reached or EXCEEDED your word count goal for the day? That’s a step!
- You finished your first draft? That counts as a step… maybe two!
- You completed your first round of edits? Guess what! Another step!
- You shipped your book baby off to beta readers and didn’t wind up with alcohol poisoning from self-medicating vodka intake? Totally a step!
- You wrote a query and/or synopsis? Step and step!
- You sent your polished manuscript off to an agent/publisher? Maybe more than one? Steppity, step, step, step, my friend!
All of those should be seen as victories… because they are! They require you to battle through self-doubt, negative inner voices, and fear to take each one. Receiving critiques and honestly applying them if and where they are needed takes bravery too. As well as a painful level of honesty with yourself and your work. It takes so much to overcome every growing pain that comprises this process. It takes fortitude and dedication and allegiance to your passion.
And if you have all of that, whether they wax and wane or whether they are a roaring fire that consumed your very being, then you are going to take each of those small, baby steps and turn them into the realization of your goal.
So reward each step, no matter how small it feels, because it is one more step to distance your from your beginning and help you reach your own happily ever after.
Happy writing, darlings!