J is for Just Keep Swimming

Gosh, it’s hard to play this game day after day after day, isn’t it?

I mean, where is my breakthrough? My success? Where’s the day where 100 agents fight over my manuscript and publishers cold call me saying they’ve read my excerpt somewhere and want to offer me a 20 book deal?

What’s that you say?

It’s no guarantee?

Even if I work my tuckus off for hours, weeks, months, years???


Well, then, what am I doing this for?

Reasons to Just Keep Swimming:

  • Dori did it. (Really, I could just stop right there. I mean, she could talk to whales, right? And even in the most direst of moments–the pitch black abyss, hello!–she kept going.)
  • With practice comes expertise.
  • It’s fun to create something that’s 100% and entirely mine.
  • It’s satisfying to rip something apart and rework it so it’s better than before (Yes, there’s angst, frustration, and worry involved in revising too, but once it’s finished, man, I’m so glad I did it.).
  • I enjoy networking with other writers.
  • I’m not ready to REALLY face giving up. Sure, I brush against the idea of quitting–sometimes frequently–but something keeps me in it. I’d call it hope.

How about you? What keeps you swimming?

16 comments on “J is for Just Keep Swimming

  1. vixter2010 says:

    You sounds just like me ๐Ÿ™‚ I think hope keeps me going, maybe it will happpen for me one day. Please, pretty please publishing gods!

  2. Cheree Smith says:

    Fantastic post. You’ll never get anywhere if you give up, and I love what you say about practice leads to expertise.

  3. I keep pushing on because half the fun is measuring my progress. I can go back to that very first, tucked away MS that I never finished to find the difference in my writing. It’s a measured success to know that I’m not that bad anymore. lol. Great post!

  4. Well, there is a saying,

    if you don’t want to be forgotten, the moment your grave is closed, do things that are worth writing or write things that are worth reading!!!

    So I am doing the later part!! Ha Ha!!

    with warm regards
    CatchyTips for Writers

  5. hehe. Just keep swimming is probably one of my favorite lines EVER. What keeps me swimming? Knowing that there’s nothing else in the world I’d rather do.

    โค Gina Blechman

  6. Tessa says:

    Well, there’s your reasons, and then there’s the fact that I think I’m just too stubborn to stop…. ; )

  7. Laura! Where on earth did you find that picture of me that was taken after struggling with a certain scene in my WIP. *wink*

    I hear you, tell it woman! JUST KEEP SWIMMING. YEAH!

  8. I must admit that I gave up hope of a contract from an agent and or a publisher. I spent years trying and one day at a conference I received the ultimate verbal rejection. She was rude. When I learned that I could self publish via ebooks I jumped at it. I’m not saying I will never go the traditional route but at this writing, it feels good to be in control of my own work.
    N. R. Williams, The Treasures of Carmelidrium.

  9. Teh heh. I hum this song to myself sometimes. ๐Ÿ™‚

  10. Great post, Laura. Very encouraging. I like the Nemo clip, too.

    What keeps me going? With respect to writing, all of the above. Your list is wonderful. Blessings to you, Laura…

  11. Akoss says:

    I’m not ready to give up, because I’ve just started (or so I like to think). But there is the excitement of writing and the writing community that I don’t think I can do without.
    I try really hard not to let the industry harsh truths and reality get to me (too much), and just focus on the writing.
    Keep swimming, and when you reach the end line of victory we will be here to celebrate with you. ๐Ÿ˜€

  12. Donna Hole says:

    Dori was so awesome ๐Ÿ™‚ Loved her.

    Some days its really hard to keep swimming. Then someone will say something on a post that encourages me, or I’ll write a review that makes another writer smile. Yep, I’d have to say hope, and good friends keep me swimming.


  13. Just keep writing! There are so many reasons to keep writing (just as there are many reasons to quit), and I think those reasons are personal and different for each of us. I just want to keep on telling my stories and I don’t know any other way to be.

  14. Arlee Bird says:

    Yup, these are excellent points. We should just keep swimming because if we don’t we’ll sink and drown. Besides when we finally reach the shore we can throw our hands in the air and do a victory dance.

    Tossing It Out
    Twitter hashtag: #atozchallenge

  15. Kendall Grey says:

    Wow, Laura, you hit every single reason why I keep going at it! Great minds think alike, right?

    Writing is a massive rollercoaster, flying on an endless loop. There are lots of ups, and the downs can be killers (mostly leading to terrible bouts of nausea), but for me (and you, it sounds like), I can’t seem to get off the ride. Sometimes I think it would be a lot easier if I could.

  16. Ciara Knight says:

    I LOVE Dori! My son and I use to sit and watch Nemo over and over a couple years ago. Although, it was a little disturbing. He’d laugh every time the mother was eaten by the shark. Yeah, okay, he didn’t get it, but still. ๐Ÿ™‚

    Great Post, Laura. You made so many fantastic points!

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