And these droughts can last months or even years and can be very discouraging. So I thought that I'd look at strategies that can help a writer overcome these lean times, to help you manage their feelings while experiencing a dry spell.
It's not advice, as such, as some of these strategies are contradictory. But I hope if you're experiencing a dry spell and feeling bad about it, you can take something away from this.
- Remember that you're not alone. Many writers experience times when they're not selling and many feel that they're never going to sell again. Many writers take years, decades to make that first sale. Participate in writers forums for moral support.
- Remember that writers are the worst judges of their own work. Keep on subbing.
- Take a writing holiday. But be clear to set a return to your writing. Recharge the creative well with whatever takes your fancy.
- If not a complete writing break, try something new. Work on critiques for writing friends. Read craft books.Consider self publishing. Write on your blog.
- If you've sold a story before consider reprint subs. These can be a real boost. And they're risk free. You've already sold the story, right?
- Concentrate on what you can control (production and submitting) rather than what you can't (acceptances).
- Celebrate what you've achieved in the past.
- Beware of feelings. Don't get caught up with non-productive rejectomancy
- Remember the time delay. Stories often take months, even years to sell.
- If you're subbing to very competitive markets, consider selling to a more 'approachable' market.
Have you ever experienced a dry spell? Or maybe you haven't sold anything--yet. What strategies do you use to cope?