Posts Tagged Talent Cheaper than Table Salt

Writing Tip #3–Talent is Cheaper than Table Salt

Kristen Lamb, WANA, writing

Image via David Farmer WANA Commons

I’ve been working as a professional editor, writer, ferret-herder for twelve years now, and one thing I’ve learned is that talent is highly overrated (which is why this quote by Stephen King remains one of my all-time favorites). I constantly meet writers more talented than I am, but I know they won’t make it despite their superior abilities.

Why?

Because they’re lazy.

I once had a boyfriend with an IQ so high it couldn’t be accurately measured. I met him when I was teaching Ju-Jitsu part time while I attended college. This boyfriend showed every class he could for about three months. He’d arrive early and stay late and practice until we were so battered we couldn’t move from sparring…

…then the excuses started.

Boyfriend showed less and less.

After 6 months, he decided Kung Fu was more his style.

He’d earned a degree in Political Science and was halfway through a combination Masters-PhD program when he quit. Later, he wanted to be a detective. He made the police force, then gave up to go do underwater basket-weaving or paint grains of rice or something or other.

Boyfriend loved books and always said he wanted to write a novel…

…if he had the time, the money, the right desk lamp from Ikea, a sharper pencil, a faster computer, more free time, or a house by the sea, free from distractions.

I was young and dumb and tried to encourage his genius, because he was so stinkin’ smart it was spooky and that was what I loved about him.

Anyway, we parted ways, and, years later, I ran into him in a grocery store. He asked how I’d been and if I was still in sales, and I told him that I’d left the corporate world and now was a published author. At the word “author” he started down that same old road. He said, “I want to be an author, but I’m just so ADD. Maybe you can help me.”

This time, instead of trying to help or agreeing with his excuses or offering to be his support buddy to make him stay on task, I said, “No, you don’t have ADD. You lack maturity and discipline.”

There are few people more ADD in this world than I am, and I get more done than most people, because I’ve created a system that helps keep me on task and productive. Now, I “focus” very differently than other people who don’t have OOH! LET’S RIDE BIKES!

…ADD, but I still get things done, because I love writing THAT much.

If we want something badly enough, we find a way. Don’t believe me? Chat with Cody McCasland (pictured below). Learn more of his story here.

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What are your thoughts? Do you make excuses? Do you recognize them and then smite them? Do you still struggle? What are your thoughts about procrastination and excuses?

I love hearing from you!

To prove it and show my love, for the month of January, everyone who leaves a comment I will put your name in a hat. If you comment and link back to my blog on your blog, you get your name in the hat twice. If you leave a comment, and link back to my blog, and mention my book We Are Not Alone in your blog…you get your name in the hat THREE times. What do you win? The unvarnished truth from yours truly.

I will pick a winner once a month and it will be a critique of the first 20 pages of your novelor your query letter, or your synopsis (5 pages or less).

NOTE: December’s winner will be announced when I return from Seattle.

And also, winners have a limited time to claim the prize, because what’s happening is there are actually quite a few people who never claim the critique, so I never know if the spam folder ate it or to look for it and then people miss out. I will also give my corporate e-mail to insure we connect and I will only have a week to return the 20 page edit.

At the end of January I will pick a winner for the monthly prize. Good luck!

I also hope you pick up copies of my best-selling books We Are Not Alone–The Writer’s Guide to Social Media and Are You There, Blog? It’s Me, Writer And both are recommended by the hottest agents and biggest authors in the biz. My methods teach you how to make building your author platform FUN. Build a platform and still have time left to write great books.

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