I like to make a big deal over each of my publishing firsts. I know what you’re thinking: Don’t you publish for the first time only once? No, absolutely not. If you’re writing in more than one genre or you write in more than one form, you’ll have many firsts, too. And that means you’ll have lots of opportunities to celebrate, which is something I like doing.
Just recently, I had my first poem published! A wonderful online literary journal, When Women Waken, provided me the honor of inclusion in their inaugural issue, Spring 2013. I was thrilled and I certainly told everyone I know about it. I tweeted, updated my Facebook, Pinterest, LinkedIn and Redroom pages, and I emailed friends and family. My husband and I popped open a bottle of bubbly and we toasted the milestone in my publishing career. Then I got back to work writing.
I also created a hoopla over my first poetry reading, my first sale, my first fiction sale, my first romance novel, and my first indie ebook. I can think of more firsts in my future to celebrate but you probably want to know why I make a fuss over these events, and why you should do the same. Here are five reasons:
1. Publishing is an industry with many opportunities for rejection and disappointment. It’s important to celebrate each and every victory. It’s important to your sense of accomplishment and self-confidence. Every hard-earned success is a moment to remind yourself that you are a talented writer.
2. Much of the publishing industry is a waiting game. You submit and wait for months to hear back. Friends and relatives don’t understand this part of the writing business and ask you constantly about your progress. Sharing your milestones with friends and relatives allows everyone to share the excitement and reminds them that you are seriously pursuing a writing career.
3. Sharing your success with your online connections is another way to get your name out there. It gives you a reason to self promote. It reminds people about you and your work. I know many writers are shy about self promotion, but we must do some. Perhaps sharing your news in the form of a “first time” announcement will make it easier for you to do. Your online community will be happy for you, too. Just as you retweet and share the good news of others, some will do the same for you.
4. Ultimately, some of these friends, relatives and connections will read your work, which they can’t do if you don’t tell them about it. And isn’t having our work read why we write in the first place?
5. Everyone likes hearing about a first sale of some sort. It gives us all hope. We think, if you broke through, then we can, too. It’s good news for all writers. People enjoy spreading hope and good news.
The next time you have work ready for the public to read, ask yourself how is it a first? Stretch your imagination. Did I tell you my very first poem, The UFO, was recently published? I’m so excited about it and I hope you’ll click to read it!