Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Another Adventure

I’m between contracts, at a crossroad in my career, wondering what to do next. Should I continue to write the same comfortable stories with characters I know and love? Or should I leave my comfort zone and try something new and bold? I decided to throw the question out to the Universe and see what develops.

I read Napoleon Hill’s "Think, and Grow Rich", and I’m putting his advice into action. The hardest part is in the initial draft – figuring out what I really want. Try putting your biggest dream into a one-sentence pitch to the Universe. I can guarantee you it’s even harder than an impromptu elevator pitch to an agent. I’ve done five revisions on that single sentence that Hill assures me will change my life. I’m ready to rock and roll.

Next, I have to throw my wish into the great listening sky and boldly demand that I receive my heart's desire. Of course, I have to pay a price for it, unlike those who practice from The Secret. They have only to wish hard enough and whatever they want becomes theirs. Nothing in my life has been that easy. Hill’s advice is to put that life-altering sentence out to the Universe, really mean every word of it, assume it’s on the way, and set a plan in motion to give something in return for the cold cash that will be flooding your mailbox.

The giving-to-receive part of the plan is the problem. I’m certainly willing, but I’ve had so many incoming messages about what I should write next, I can’t sift through the bedrock in my brain to find the piece of gold. Which random idea am I to follow? Which one will lead me down the path to financial gain and personal glory? And which one will cast me into the abyss, never to be heard from again?

I might have too much time on my hands. I should be writing short stories and proposals and guest blogging. Instead I’m waiting and walking and having conversations with someone in my head that I’m pretty sure is just me.

I love to write, I have to write, but I also want to make a difference in lots of lives. The only certain in my future is that I will continue to write stories. A fan sent an email last week. She’d been critically ill for four months and said the only time she laughed and felt good was when she was reading my Yooper series. I could have cried. What a relief to know that I had affected someone that way. I want to do it over and over again.

So my request is out there. I know the plan is coming. Tomorrow, I’m going to write something, not sure what, plenty of ideas, hope I chose wisely just like Indiana Jones did when he selected the right goblet. It’s all in the believing. Anything is possible once we know what we want and how to get there. Sounds easy. It's not.


Candy Calvert said...

Great post, Deb--and a subject I can truly empathize with. I'm in that same boat (if you'll pardon the nautical reference), and have spent countless hours soul-searching. It's incredibly hard to change directions, and obviously risky--but IMO you must honor that gut feeling about what is calling to you ("making a difference"). I'm doing that--and my agent will be winging my new series proposal out to editors this week. Both exciting and unnerving, but am glad I'm doing it. My sense is that you'll feel the same way.

All good thoughts your way!


Sue Ann Jaffarian said...

Great and passionate posting, Deb!

I haven't read either The Secret or Think, and Grow Rich. But I have read Wishcraft, which is about the same thing - reaching a goal. Pretty much it's about 1)determine your goal, 2) visualize your goal; 3) determine what is needed to meet that goal and 4) set your feet upon the path and start moving towards it without too many detours. It's almost like planning a trip.

It's also a lot of hard work.

I have faith in you, Deb. I know you will find just the right Universe pitch and have the stamina to see it through.

BIG HUGS! Remember, you're not alone. Neither are you, Candy.

Joe Moore said...

“Of course, I have to pay a price for it, unlike those who practice from The Secret.” Deb, there’s not a lot of difference between practicing THE SECRET and what you’ve described as Napoleon Hill’s action plan. I think it all boils down to: You are what you think. My wife and I discovered THE SECRET when it first came out on DVD over a year ago. We have watched it dozens of times. Bottom line: it really works. I can’t tell you how many times we’ve practiced it and had absolute, undeniable results. It’s very common for us to turn to each other and say, “Well, there you go, the secret worked again.”

One of the biggest problems I faced initially was feeling guilty for asking for things I didn’t have and wondering if I deserved them. I got over that real quick. The interesting thing about THE SECRET is when you get the results you want, they almost NEVER come from where you expect. So keep it up. Tell the universe what you really want and it will start making it happen right away. Good luck.

Deb Baker said...

Thanks for the encouragement. We're all on the right path, I'm sure of it. Joe, I'm going to buy that DVD.

Mark Combes said...

I love Ralph Waldo Emerson - anyone that's read my first novel can confirm that. Here is a quote of his that I have in my office:

"There is no luck in literary reputation. They who make up the final verdict upon every book are not the partial and noisy readers of the hour when it appears; but a court as of angels, a public not to be bribed, not to be entreated, and not to be overawed, decides upon every man’s title to fame. Only those books come down which deserve to last."

It ain't up to us kiddies. You do the best work you can and let the angels decide.

Mark Terry said...

I wonder how many of us feel we're in that same boat. I know I am. In my case it's more like I've got my feet in two different boats. One seems rock solid, sleek and steady, and the other one just looks cool but I'm suspicious that it's actually full of holes, unsteady and ready to capsize at any minute.

You'd think it was a no-brainer, but that one boat looks so cool...

Joe Moore said...

"It ain't up to us kiddies. You do the best work you can and let the angels decide." Hey, Mark2, why do you think we write books about angels? Taking no chances. :-)

Deb Baker said...

You aren't going to believe me...but my agent called thirty minutes ago. Berkley wants more doll books, and we are in negotiations. This stuff really works! But they want it by December. gasp. Maybe the Secret works too well.

Joe Moore said...

"Maybe the Secret works too well." Be careful what you wish for, Deb. That's great news.

See, Mark2, the angels have spoken!!!

Michael Donlan said...

If your experience is anything like mine, your vision of the future will come to you in little pieces that you have to put together in your mind like a puzzle. About 6 months ago, I decided that I need to follow my heart into a new career. At the time, I thought I was going to be an inspirational speaker, but I am seeing now that I am going to be, I'm sure you'll love this, a writer. I do believe the public speaking is still going to be a part of it, since I'm going to be writing inspirationally.

My advice is, watch carefully, because the vision you have now may change, but it will always change for the better.