Tuesday, November 25, 2014

#UtopYA2015 Time Warp Tuesday

Happy Time Warp Tuesday, everyone! Today's post is all about #WriteYourOwnFuture and talking about your past. Because I love the heart and soul of UtopYA Con, I'm gonna share some things about the event and give some advice to those wanting to write or the writers that are thinking of giving up. I'll also include some of my pictures from UtopYA 2014. Ready? Let's get rolling!

First off, let me pop in a reminder that tickets to the most awesome author conference on the planet go on sale NOVEMBER 28, 2014. That's right, Black Friday.

There are so many things I could say about UtopYA, but that would be a huge blog post. Now that I've gone, I know I won't be able to stay away. It'll take wild horses (and maybe chains) to keep me from returning to experience the camaraderie and spirit I found in Nashville.

Once a city I thought of as the Country music hub, it's now morphed into something magical and bookish in my mind. Readers lurking around every corner, mystical creatures peering from behind drapes, and a certain something that lights a fire in my writer self.

I'll get into Nashville and the Millennium Maxwell House more next month, for my UtopYA post in tandem with the other three bloggers: Shana, Maria, and Ashley. Watch out for those.

If you want to read about my experience at the con, I have a post here on my blog and a resolutions post here on The Paisley Reader that'll tell you what my goals are/were.

For fun, I'm including a couple of awesome photos from the con! Misty Provencher is with me in the first one, and Tia Silverthorne Bach and Toni Lesatz are in the second :)

Because those two posts are in place, I'd like to focus on the up and coming writer, or the one with serious doubts, in this one. I'm going with two of the prompts provided by Janet Wallace.

Q1: What would you say to someone who wants to write a book, but has doubts and fears?

"This one's easy: keep writing. No matter what, if you have the fire burning inside you to put words on a page in a cohesive manner, keep going. Never stop. Not even when that last word hits the page and you declare your first novel finished. Write another one. Put them out there for the world to see. Most people don't write 30k words in their lifetime. You're doing something awesome. Why would you ever let that go? WRITE ON! It's not just a meme."

Q2: What would you say to someone who's written a bunch of books, but haven't had the success they thought they would, and are thinking of giving up?

"Define success. First of all, you have to know what your idea of success is before you ever publish that first book. Are you after fame? Fortune? Notoriety? Supplying readers with great books? It's imperative you understand what you're trying to accomplish before you set out to get 'er done.

For example: My success is when someone leaves a review on something I've written that says how much they loved the story, or when someone comments on my blog saying how much they learned or appreciate the information I put here. I get all gooey inside knowing I entertained someone, moved them, made them feel something they might not have before, or brought them a little knowledge. I have pride in educating people. There's not one of my novels that doesn't teach the reader something. Even if it's just where Ringing Rocks Park in Pennsylvania is, and why it's such an interesting place to visit.

After you've given success your personal definition, move on to how you've achieved those goals.

If you're still feeling like you haven't done what you set out to do, try a different angle. Do something new. Keep going. To give up on yourself is worse than others giving up on you. Always drive forward with a goal in mind."

I hope that helps someone, somewhere, who's either thinking of writing a novel or giving up writing to forge ahead.

Did you post for Time Warp Tuesday? Leave us your link to check out!

Well, that's all for today, folks! Until next time, WRITE ON!



  1. Great post, Jo. I agree with you that success is a personal measurement. Don't let anyone else tell you that you are or are not successful. That's one of the things I love about UtopYA. There is no judgement, only acceptance. If you want to be accepted for who you are and where you are right now, but also encouraged to become the best you can be and achieve your personal dreams, you will find no better place than UtopYA Con.

  2. I love your answers =) I feel like as an author you can have so many highs and lows that it's a good idea to always consider why you love the job in the first place.


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