I read this great post on Maggie Stiefvater’s blog the other day and just had to share her wise words of advice with you.
She wrote the post because people (I’m assuming writers) were on twitter talking about some authors’ careers and whether they deserve their fame. Maggie is into race cars and has spent some time in race cars and on race tracks and says writing is a lot like driving a race car.
She says that when you are driving a race car you are told to ‘put your eyes up as far as you can see down the road, and look there. Only when you see the absolute farthest point can you start to calculate the best way of getting there.’
She goes on to say, ‘A writing career is like that. Use your peripheral vision to look at the things that are coming at you day to day, but never forget that every decision should contribute that farthest-away-point you want to get to. Never forget that every tiny success and failure is just a steer or counter steer toward the real point of the thing.
And here’s the other thing they tell you about keeping your eyes up: don’t fixate on the person in front of you…Eyes up, drivers, they say: look past the car in front of you. All you need to do is to note them well enough that you can pass them when you find a better way to take the turn.
Don’t fixate, writers. Eyes up, writers. I don’t care if x or y is doing a or b. What does that have to do with me? I have my eyes on where I want to go, and no one else matters.’
Do you find yourself doing this? I do sometimes and all it does is make me feel miserable, so I’m going to take Maggie’s advice and not fixate, keep my eyes up and worry about me. How about you?