You’ve heard the old adage to show, not tell, millions of times. It’s the golden rule of writing. But have you ever thought of applying it to your everyday life?
Not many people took me seriously when I first started working on What Happens in New York. I’d lost my passion for projects halfway through many times, so I didn’t blame them.
But this time, I was serious.
I needed to publish that book. For me.
And the closer it got towards the launch, the more people that believed me.
I stopped telling them how serious I was about publishing What Happens in New York. It felt like a waste of energy.
Instead, I got home from work and sat at my laptop for hours writing, editing, designing, and marketing my little book.
It wasn’t until a release date was set that people’s perceptions of me changed.
Their reactions weren’t just, ‘You’re writing a book? That’s cool,’ they were, ‘You’re publishing a book? That’s amazing! I don’t know many people that have done that before!’
Being surrounded by writers I often forget just how big of a deal being published is, whichever route you take. But it is a big deal. It’s a form of validation. It introduces your work to the world. It proves to people that you’re not just someone who writes, you’re a writer.
If nobody believes you…
The thing to remember is that nobody is ever going to believe in you unless you believe in yourself first.Nobody is ever going to believe in you unless you believe in yourself first. Click To Tweet
You are the one who has to live with the consequences of every decision that you make. Choosing to do nothing is just as significant a choice as choosing to do something.Choosing to do nothing is just as significant a choice as choosing to do something. Click To Tweet
Once a person’s perceptions of us are formed, it’s very difficult for them to change.
When I was at school, I had a reputation for being narrow-minded and conservative. My friends now find this hilarious, but it’s true. When we moved on to sixth form, I tried to shake this image, but my friends at the time still tried to force me into their preconceived image of me. Whenever I said or did something outside of that, they’d say, ‘You can’t say/do that!’ teamed with an utterly horrified face.
Ten years on, I don’t speak to anyone I went to school with anymore. And I am far from the person I was as a teenager.
I’m far from the person I was just eighteen months ago.
But none of the self-confidence I’ve gained in the last year has come from other people. While I may still be prone to self-doubt, my confidence has come from hard work and seeing a project through to the end.
What Happens in New York hasn’t sold enough to pay off our mortgage. It’s barely sold enough for us to go out for a meal. But that’s ok. I wrote a published it to prove to myself I could do it, and I did.