Celebrate the Small Wins

Monday, December 18, 2023


Yesterday I danced in the kitchen. There was singing. There was twirling. There was my very confused  20-year-old son and reluctant dancing partner. We were celebrating. No, I didn’t sign a contract, finish a book or snag a full-time writing gig. It was an opportunity I thought was lost being suddenly revived. A small win.
There was a time when a nebulous win like that would have gone unmentioned. 
At our house, the men in my family answer the perennial question “What did you do today?” with concrete events (sometimes literally, as they have a side gig pouring concrete). I fixed the 920 machine. I used the plasma cutter to make a new connector. I worked on the scissor lift. These are the types of things my son and husband do each day. I don’t always understand their industry jargon but I understand that things are happening.
For a long time, I felt that accomplishments like writing 1000 words, researching home and garden markets or receiving a request for a writing sample weren’t big enough to qualify as an answer for our daily supper question. Next to welders, backhoes and tag outs they didn’t feel real.
Being a writer involves thousands of tiny positive steps that may or may not lead to a big win. Somewhere along the line, I decided that those tiny steps deserved to celebrated. In the beginning, my family listened silently to the many little things a writer does each day. They were probably a little confused or bored. Eventually, they became familiar with the journey writers take each day as we search for new jobs, new ideas, new contacts.
I no longer dismiss my small wins as not worth mentioning. I now see each small win as a positive step in my writing journey. It may not look like much now but someday, with enough small steps, I’ll have reached my goal. And I’ve invited my family along for the journey, which they happily celebrate - sometimes with dancing. 
How do you celebrate the small wins?

Jodi M. Webb was published in dozens of magazines and anthologies you won’t recognize. She even spent several years as a WOW Blog Tour Manager and has the sweatshirt to prove it! For the last 12 years, she’s written ad copy, advertorials and organized contests for her local newspaper. Stay tuned for what comes next!


Sue Bradford Edwards said...

What a valuable reminder! I don't celebrate the small wins enough. But as I sit down and get ready to send out my nonfiction proposal, that is exactly what I need to do. Edwards for the win!

Angela Mackintosh said...

Amen, Jodi! :) It's all about the little cumulative steps. I'm celebrating right now because I committed to a three-month novel writing class. It's a small thing, but I've set my mind on doing it. I also realized I've been dismissing my NaNoWriMo accomplishment of writing 20k words. I was bummed because the writing didn't go as planned, but I hit my goal, so I should be dancing! Thanks for the reminder. :)

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