There are times we all lose our writing steam. Maybe it’s triggered by a rejection on a manuscript that you rewrote twice for the same editor. Or maybe your book just isn’t selling. Or your editor leaves and you just don’t click with her replacement.
I was feeling a little ho hum after my last deadline, but then I saw Leanne Sowul's post on writing a mission statement. A mission statement helps you see past the commas and quotation marks and remember why you got into this business in the first place. I adapted the questions that Sowul used to generate her statement and my responses below.
1. Why do readers want to hear what you have to say? I have an uncanny knack for identifying realities that many people would rather ignore. This particular talent makes me especially popular with teens and boys.
2. What unique skill set do you bring into this venture? My mother called me a “nosey body.” I prefer to think of it as curiosity. My academic background is anthropology/archaeology and history. I know how to dig for the facts, what questions to ask and how to evaluate what I find.
3. How does writing impact your life? What does this offer your readers? Every time I write something, I learn something new that changes how I see the world. I want to share this wider reality with my readers.
Working from these answers, I created my mission statement.
My mission as a writer is to locate and tell nonfiction and fiction stories that make people squirm, stories and realities that young readers want to read as they grow and learn about the world and try to sort out what is real. Because I am willing to explore uncomfortable truths, I will offer my readers the opportunity to broaden their perspectives and to truly see the wider world around them.
Not too shabby and I'd like to thank Sowul for her post. You can read it here. Now I just need to memorize it so that I have it on hand the next time I’m questioning why I should even sit down to write.
To find out more about Sue Bradford Edwards writing, visit her blog, One Writer's Journey.
Sue is also the instructor for Writing Nonfiction for Children and Young Adults which starts again 2/6/2017.