Tuesday, July 5, 2016

The Cow Who Climbed a Tree AND Other Ways to Kick Doubt Out

**As seen on EasternPennPoints Blog (Eastern PA Chapter of SCBWI)**

I’ll be in the middle of writing and I’ll get this unwelcome visitor called Doubt. *sigh* And this visitor asks all kinds of annoying questions. Can you write? I mean really write? Will you ever be published? What are you doing? Are you wasting your time? Should you keep plugging away?

And so if you’ve ever experienced a Doubt visit, you’ve got to read The Cow Who Climbed a Tree by Gemma Merino. To discover Impossible! Ridiculous! Nonsense! is absolutely possible. Even when there’s a ton of naysaying from your herd or in your own head.

Matt de la Peña is proof. He received the 2016 Newbery Award for Last Stop on Market Street. His acceptance speech mentions Doubt. Here's an excerpt:

This job can be a lonely, lonely ride. And there are moments when it’s nearly impossible to maintain a belief in yourself. Ninety-nine percent of the time the words don’t seem quite good enough. Or the characters don’t seem quite real enough. Or, worst of all, you don’t feel quite talented enough.
So how can we kick Doubt out? These are the branches I climb:

·         I’m open to learning. I read, read, read. I attend workshops. I'm a member of the Society of Children’s Book Writersand Illustrators (SCBWI). And I'll be chairing/co-chairing a new SCBWI picture book critique group in Mechanicsburg, PA (interested? contact me at: jeannecurtin@yahoo.com).

·         I surround myself with positive people. I can’t imagine life without my loved ones and friends cheering me along the way.

·         I have reminders in my environment. Like these words on my wall:
    Make your Magic = write.
    Be Grateful = I take a moment of each day to acknowledge people/things in my world for which I’m genuinely thankful.
    Believe = that my goals of publication will happen.
    ·         I keep healthy. I walk. Run stairs. Take time to enjoy life. Adventure. And eat right as much as possible.

   ·         I practice, practice, practice.

Have you used these Doubt busters? Do you use other ways to kick Doubt out? Please share in the comments below!

#SCBWI #NewberyAward #MattdelaPena #GemmaMerino #amwriting #kidlit #doubt  #picturebooks #GetBrave #LiveLife