The Stolen Twin
Guest Post by Michele Pariza Wacek:
Why it Took Me 10 Years To Publish “The Stolen Twin”
Back in 1998, I quit my job to become a fulltime freelance writer/copywriter.
At the time, there were no coaching, masterminding or mentoring programs that taught you how to set up and run a successful business (or, if there were, I didn’t know about them as the Internet was still in its infancy) so I went to the Small Business Association (SBA) and got myself a counselor.
When the counselor learned what my business plans were, he invited a retired freelance writer to come in and give me some tips.
Well, her “tips” turned out to be her trying to talk me out of becoming a freelance writer. For about 45 minutes, the conversation went something like this:
“Being a freelance writer is a really difficult way to earn a living.”
“Okay, what should I do?”
“Can you get your job back?”
“No, I can’t get my job back.”
“Are you sure? It’s really difficult to earn a living as a freelance writer.”
“Yes, I’m sure I can’t get my job back.”
“You could work full time at your job and on nights and weekends do freelance work until you have enough work to quit.”
“I really can’t get my job back.”
You get the idea. Finally at the end she said “Okay, I guess I can’t talk you out of this so here are a few tips.” And she finally gave me those “tips,” which I dutifully wrote down.
We were getting read to leave when I decided to chime in and tell her “you know, one of the reasons why I’m so excited to become a freelance writer is because then I’ll have time to finally work on my novels.”
She got a look of complete horror on her face and said “Oh my God, NEVER tell anyone you’re working on fiction. You’ll NEVER get any work.”
Now, basically this woman was pretty much dead wrong on everything she told me that day. Even her “tips” were basically worthless. But, for some reason, what she told me about the novels stuck. So, I didn’t talk about my fiction very much, I especially didn’t share about the novel I had written 2002/2003.
If you do have a dream or a creative project that in your heart you know you really want to be working on (what Stephen Covey calls the “important but not urgent”) I’d love for you to take a moment and just breathe into what’s stopping you. You don’t necessarily need to do anything — just take a moment to see what’s keeping you from working on this project.
In my case, I had completely forgotten about this whole exchange until I was getting ready to publish my novel and one of my clients exclaimed “why isn’t it we’ve never heard until now that you’re publishing a novel?”
In other words, something I didn’t even remember kept me stuck.