Monday, April 11, 2011

Imagine It

There are sure a lot of great 'I' words aren't there? The verbs... Inspire, integrate, itch, irk... nouns... Idiom, ink, individual, ibex, imagination ... adjectives... Iconic, individual (fits here, too, eh?), illusory, icky... So many choices...


I thought very much about featuring Independent...

Did you know I was a firehorse? Chinese centuries are 60 years long... twelve animals, five elements... and the quality that defines horses is independence... and the element of fire magnifies this to such a degree that in ancient China, we tended to be euthanized. It was believed we were so fiercely independent that we would surely dishonor our families...

And it's true... among my traits, this one comes across VERY strongly. I do things my own way and hesitate to ask for help...


random pic found on 'Independent Press' search

But my TOPIC was to be Independent Publishing...

You see... Self-publishing is trying to commandeer a label that previously meant published by a small, independent press, as opposed to a BIG press.

Now my hesitation on self-publishing is waning... I think there are times, places, circumstances... in which it may actually be a really smart idea. (not always, and I still think a lot of people are doing it too early in process, as there is no one to stop them, but I am shifting).

But I have a problem with a label that used to mean a very specific thing being STOLEN so something sounds... I want to say more legitimate, but I don't think self-publishing is illegitimate... But independently published books are published by SMALL PRESSES. It irks me to have Amazon (among others) calling self-published 'independent'. So there.


But the topic I think I really want to talk about is IMAGERY and thinking ourselves forward... if we IMAGINE our success... it is easier to get there.

Athletes learn this—particularly athletes who perform routines, but all athletes... envision your success... the routine done perfectly, the game played with no errors, the race run or swum fastest...

It also works for giving a presentation or doing a stage performance...

But can it work for this writing path we're on? Can we visualize ourselves through the first draft... through editing... though querying... If I imagine myself winning ABNA can I make it happen?

My answer is a resounding 'Sort of'.

I believe we can imagine ourselves through the performance pieces... picture ourselves writing like mad and make it happen... picture the editing (and that giddy thing from really doing it well)... picture ourselves finding the right critique partners and sending it out... getting feedback and really FEELING it so that our work improves... Those things, I believe we can imagine into being.

The OUTCOMES? Agent loves the query? (needs to have the imagined perfecting of that query, first)... Agents love the ms? Needs to have been perfected... the contests? There is no freaking way ANY amount of imagining will change the OTHER people who enter, so go ahead and imagine it, but probably there is a piece of this that is strictly luck...

So let's do it, my friends... let's imagine the success we can have... Imagine it!



And now for a couple I blogs...

In Time: Michael is one of my friends I met through the ABNA connection, but he and I share a Harry Potter obsession and he is FABULOUS. You definitely should check him out...

Inkpots and Quills: Ann lives part of the time in the US and part in Ireland, and has lots of interesting tales on family and writing (and she's a new grandma! Squeee!)

29 comments:

Siv Maria said...

What I want to know is how you found out you were a firehorse. Nice post, there are alot of great I words, I am still thinking on it.

AllMyPosts said...

Well, I am not fire horse .. but do things that dishonor my name!! Ha Ha!!


W.R.T. independent publishing.. I don't have any idea!!! and imagining our success?? that is called dreaming right?? Don't we all dream a lot??

with warm regards
http://becomingprince.blogspot.com

Al said...

Interesting post.

I love Ann's Inkpot and Quills site,
I'll have a look at Michael's

Ted Cross said...

I agree with you that Independent Publishing should stick to meaning published by small presses. Self-Publishing is the right term, IMO, for what these folks are doing.

Jan Morrison said...

Again we draw from the same well! Mine is imagination. I'm a full metal jacket bunny in Chinese astrology. We're supposed to be shy. ha! This is my year (yep, turning 60 this winter) and I'm hoping that makes life better. I was told though - that before the rabbit can settle down to nesting, she kicks up a great mess. Seems true...
And I'm with you on the stealing of the term 'independent publishing' same thing in the movie business. Thing is, if there's dough in the title - it'll get stolen. So...it does mean that there is dough to be had in independent publishing (or the appearance of same)...
later.

Elizabeth Spann Craig/Riley Adams said...

I like the idea of imagining ourselves through the book process! Good idea.

Hart Johnson said...

Siv-it changes by year (on the Chinese new year) but you can find it by googling! I've got a book, but it's all online pretty easily.

Prince--teehee, I know, right? As for dreaming and imagining... I think there is overlap, but I am thinking of it more as visualizing... See the steps happening.

Al, thank you!

Ted-totally agree with you! Stealing the word feels like manipulation of the reader and I don't LIKE it!

Jan--that doesn't sound so different from horses! We leave home early and settle down late... (long adolescence)--and YES! Your year! (I think you are right on the money thing, which makes it bug me all the more)

Elizabeth, thank you!

Sylvia Colette Branch said...

Every year is our year..just imagine it is true, right? Great post! Glad I found your blog through the A to Z challenge. Fun stuff!
http://www.sylviebranch.com

Old Kitty said...

I imagine you being so NAKEDly successful with your writing!!! Yay!!! for being fiery and fiercy independent!!

Take care
x

siderealview said...

so glad you said it, Tart: but still can't resist... though only I word, if you're counting, is "it"
"Dream it, Feel it, Be it"
May be New Age to a Firehorse, but (from a Firetiger) it's the original 'believe, expect, love' or Xtian 'Faith, Hope, Charity'. howzatt!

Nf1andprek-whisper said...

a firehorse.. sounds like a great title to a book.. but I want to know what I am.. how do I find out? I enjoyed.. this post.

Sarah Ahiers (Falen) said...

firehorse is AWESOME! Makes me wish i was one...

vbtremper said...

I agree that Firehorse would be a great book title.

Interesting point about self-publishing co-opting the term independent. I think they're confusing the issue and will cause problems for true indies. The problem is that self-publishing has gotten a bad rap. How can we solve this?

-Vicki

Lucy Adams said...

You bring up such a huge debate as of late in the publishing world, which is changing so rapidly that many authors are caught looking like deer in headlights. Ironicly, publishing has become one of the easist things to do, but one of the toughest to do well.

Lucy

Hart Johnson said...

Sylvia-great way to look at it! Every year is our year!

Jenny-Yes, ALWAYS naked in my imagining my success!

Marian-I can't hear 'It' without the Monty Python scene and the knights who say Ni... teehee Fabulous perspective, though!

Lisa-it IS a good title! Ooooohh.... and I think I even have an idea to go with it!

Sarah-the only trouble is it would make you marginally OLD...

VB--totally agree. I think Indies will have more trouble if this perception changes... as for self-pubs bad rap... I have an idea... a writer's guild sort of thing where WELL DONE books (self published or otherwise) can earn an endorsement... blindly reviewed by a few published authors... rated... gives a quality rating to build reader trust.

Lucy-It really is sort of scary to face the changing landscape, isn't it? Which route do you go? I don't want to see traditional publishing fail, but they will if they don't start to be a little innovative as to what they bring to the table.

Carolyn Abiad said...

What an amazing pic for the firehorse! I'm an ox. So exciting, isn't it? LOL! I'm an ox with an overactive imagination. Maybe the "diligent" quality helps keep my at the laptop, revising, but "stubborn"? Me? No way! ;)

L. Diane Wolfe said...

Hart, I agree. Independent means a small, independent publisher.

Cheeseboy said...

Well, sort of will have to do. Interesting though. I learn so much about independent publishing from your blog and I find it all fascinating, even though I am not publishing anything or have plans to.

LTM said...

the power of positive thinking! I think we can imagine these things and translate them into the motivation to keep working at getting better, yes? Although there is that mystical element. I just pray a lot--LOL! And I have the best critters~ xoxo <3

Michael Di Gesu said...

Aw,

Thanks for the shout-out Hart. Yes, we do share our HP obsession. But we also share our love for writing and reading.

And to Imagine a published work... You're on you're way in ABNA... KEEP GOING HART ON THE WINDS OF YOUR FIREHORSE!

Ciara said...

Lot's of great stuff int his post, Hart! :)

Interesting about self-pub.

Halli Gomez said...

Love your Inspirational post! I agree with the imagery. You have to be positive or you might as well put your pen away now!
Thanks!

Glad you like (most of) the 15 things about me. Oh by the way, I saw this license plate on the way home:

Nmbus'00

I know you know that that stands for. Kicking myself that I didn't think of that!

Halli

Helena said...

As an about-to-self-publish author, I don't use the indie term. Then again maybe self-publishing can be called "extreme indie."

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

I'm imagining, I'm imagining!
And I can see the firehorse...

Tracy said...

interesting post...I actually didn't equivocate a small town publisher with self-publishing~
Ummmm...

http://sbpra.com/tracyspaine/

erica and christy said...

Jack Canfield's a huge advocate of imagining success - and yeah, he's sold a few books. ;)
erica

Kris Yankee said...

I love the name of your blog! There are so many I words, but you picked some of the best.

Margaret Hall said...

((sorry to show up late un-announced)..lol)..
Whew! We decided somewhat on the same theme for "I"...I certainly like YOUR "I" posting a heckuva' lot better than mine~!! Love your take on "I"...I think that "I" was tough for me..I was volunteering all day, didn't have time to post and then are now playing catch up!
Love your blog, even though I was absent yesterday...Keep on bloggin'
Thanks for visitin'...

http://timeforabucketlist.blogspot.com/
http://imagesinthought.blogspot.com/
http://the-old-story-tree.blogspot.com/
http://bagladythoughts.blogspot.com/

Shannon Lawrence said...

I am a fire snake in Chinese astrology. Visualizing certainly can't hurt, so I'm all about visualizing a little writing success.