Writing Advice: Optimism


There are many qualities that help you out if you’re thinking of becoming a writer, or if you simply feel called to write. I’ve talked about many of these qualities in the past, but today I would like to focus on optimism. When we’re talking about writing, optimism is a day-to-day choice that you must make to feel good about what you’re working on and the progress that you’ve made. It can be fairly easy to lose perspective when receiving rejection letters or failing to meet personal writing goals. But optimism is a great tool to remember when facing any writing-related challenges.

In a guest post on Writer Unboxed, author Nina Amir talked about the topic of optimism for writers. In her post, Nina said that osptimism “means a rejection from an agent presents an opportunity to improve your query letter or your book proposal. A negative review of your manuscript by a book doctor at a conference presents a chance to rethink your plot or your content—or even to hone your craft. A session with a proposal consultant who tells you your platform section needs strengthening offers the opportunity to rethink your pre-promotion activity level.”

I love what Nina says here — a big part of optimism is seeing the opportunity in every situation. When something doesn’t go as planned for you, you should be able to spin it to your advantage. Every bad review or bit of disappointing news can be turned around to mean further opportunities for improvement. You can learn from all of your mistakes and take in what critical people around you say. Use all of that information to your advantage and for your own, more optimistic ends!

Now, does this mean that you can never have a bad day? Can you never take a day to wallow in misery and feel bad about your situation? Absolutely not! We all need days like those. But, in the long run, it’s important to remain positive and optimistic about where you’re headed.

Happy writing, and stay optimistic!

— Jet Fuel Blog Editor, Mary Egan


3 thoughts on “Writing Advice: Optimism

  1. lucas boelter July 7, 2014 / 4:10 pm

    And yet one lives for the tragedy in failure, in “what could have been.” Does not rejection allow for greater freedom to live and imagine? And is one’s life not more fitting to the artist’s object if no success comes of it? If one is not pressed by an audience? One must think the greatest art is one’s life, for it is the metal of art unrefined; and it is the finest art that is stretched to the limits of sorrow and loss and delusion, like Hamlet. To retain the pure aloneness of normalcy whilst still existing in and creating the ultimate narrative of life – to manipulate one’s experience so to produce in it more profundity and uniqueness, to exalt in the strange physical and mental circumstances one finds oneself in, to engage with all transcendence and ephemerality in the truest form that they exist. It is in the life uncorrupted by viewership that the true stuff dwells, in the curiosity unstrained by the recognition of the inevitable opinions of others. If one wishes for art then one should wish for failure or should refuse to publish; it is the finest thing to see the most important objects parish. Accept the devastation as necessary to the purpose. The only true satisfaction is it’s disappearance.

    • Editor July 7, 2014 / 7:11 pm

      You certainly make some good points.

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