1. The feel of a memoir - Have you uttered the words, one day I'm going to write a book? Many do but few will. This is what the accomplishment looks like, feels like, sounds like. Take out your journals, photo albums, videos, old family letters, trinkets, treasures, and every other recording you can find. Depending at what point you are in your life you may have enough of a collection to tell a story the world is ready to hear. No one has stood exactly where you have been in your footprint. Whether you write it for public consumption or as a family gift the time is now. Make a plan and break it down into small parts to be done daily.
2. Discipline of writing on a strict time line - Completing a 400 page book in four months takes diligence. Granted it helps to have the incentive of a sign, sealed, delivered sure to be a hit deal, which most of us scribes do not begin with. But imagine what you could achieve if you committed to writing 3 pages a day? In four months you'd have a 400 page novel. If you can tell your story in less than you'll be ready to meet your editorial genie that much sooner!
3. Develop a solid foundation of support - No matter where Sarah's political and authorial adventures take her she's always most at home with her feet planted on Alaskan soil and her family at her side. Whether you're traveling the globe or just through each day, what or whom forms your support system? Remember playing tag as a kid. There was always one area that was safe. Base we called it. Where is your base? The place and people you can return to where you feel grounded, loved, supported, and safe, or at least sane again.
4. Being led by the conviction of faith - This is a challenging one for me because I'm not spiritually centered in this way. I've included it here because I am impressed with Sarah's firm belief in following the path and direction set forth by God and the confidence, peace, and success this brings her. I do believe there is a universal force at work in our lives and that desires, requests, and searches for solutions are answered and delivered upon. Wherever yours originates from, faith in yourself and your writing is a necessary trait when navigating the publishing waters.
5. Fighting For what you believe in - Out of confidence emerges leadership and leaders take a stand and defend it regardless of controversy and obstacles. Sarah's track record illustrates numerous examples of her ability to remain firm and do whatever it took to achieve the desired outcome. Writing is a very powerful platform, especially with the internet today. Use it wisely to carve out your niche, express your convictions, and offer value. In the global arena you'll find like-minded souls out there to connect with.
6. Setting the record straight in your own words - Definitely a perk to writing books, blogs, and articles. Sarah was able to tell her side of every story, which enables readers to understand what was really going on behind the scenes, a more accurate account than anything the mainstream media reported. Maybe every move you make and every word you speak is not on public display but most of us have experienced wrongs we'd like to write. Fiction can offer you a path to healthy expression that won't get you into trouble and non-fiction can provide healing and a way to help others who may be going through similar challenges.
7. Commanding attention - These people attract a loyal following and sell books! What can you do with your scribe style, subject, voice, that will make you stand out from the crowd? Your personal brand and your experiences are unique to you. That's what people will pay attention to and come back for more of.
8. The powerful get things done - While some talk, others do. Sarah's victories are well defined in this novel. Part of being powerful is taking tasks all the way to completion. Do you have writing projects that you've started and never finished? Make a list of them and all the steps necessary to complete each one. Then before you move onto something else do one of the tasks. It will spur you onto fulfilling another.
9. Focus on the lunch hour reader - Sarah relates to, listens to, and communicates with the everyday proud American people. Some of your most loyal customers may be the avid readers that take your characters along with their chicken sandwich on a one hour lunch break. Are you listening to what your audience wants more of?
10. Your environment shapes you - Growing up in Alaska lends a unique perspective in opinions,decision making, and habits. Wherever you were raised you learn, act, and behave according to your life experiences. Capitalize on the first chapters of your story. They created your individuality and when spilled on the pages of your next best seller will enable you to gain the attention of a dedicated selection of fans.
You empower yourself by reading. You inspire others by writing. When you discover a great book that benefited you in some way pass it on!
What books are on your top 3 list of favorite reads and why?