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The Secret to Achieving Different Results

I think at this point, we all know that success isn’t achieved by doing the same thing over and over again but expecting different results. If you want to change, you need to change. This means doing something differently.

It means writing a different query or a different book. It means a different way of asking your kids to clean their rooms or scheduling your day differently.

I agree with this. If you want change, you need to make change. I also think it’s not the only thing that will help achieve different results.

It’s one thing to write another query, but the assumption that only the query is the problem while holding on to the belief that the book is perfect isn’t going to achieve the change you want.

You Need to Change Your Thinking

I actually don’t think the “doing” is as much of a problem as the “thinking” when it comes to success. If your goal is to achieve different results, you need to do more than just change your behavior. You need to change your thinking.

Changing a query, for example, would be doing something different. But it’s not going to help if you haven’t also changed your thinking. You can rework the query, but if you’re still convinced the book is totally perfect for the market, despite the 50 agents who’ve told you otherwise. It’s likely a new query won’t help.

You need to rethink everything you’re doing. The book you’re pitching and the book you’re writing. You need to think of the market differently and your approach to querying.

It’s not just the query, it’s your entire process. How can you think about it differently, before doing it differently? Before writing your next book, reviewing and knowing the market could make a huge difference, bigger than just a query.

Mindset is everything and a willingness to change not just what you do but how you think truly is the key to success.

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2 comments

  1. On “thinking” as a key to publishing success —
    While imagination, creativity, perseverance, and brains all play a role in success in any field, publishing success in writing has, in my experience, a much bigger component of randomness than any other field I’ve worked in (teaching, sports, coaching, a health-care career, stage-acting, directing conferences, research, trout-fishing, cycle-racing). I’ve held graduate-level teaching posts in three countries, practiced as a dental surgeon for 40 years in two countries, had a run on the amateur stage, played rugby for 18 years, coached men’s and women’s rugby, ran international professional conferences in the US and overseas, fished around the world, and am part of a cycling team that held a 3100-mi. cross-the-US record for 14 years. Research is a large component in all those endeavors, and in virtually all them, success was a function of the amount you were willing to learn, and the amount of effort you were willing to expend in putting that learning to work.
    After 20 years of effort, I find that is not true of writing and interacting with the publishing industry. Who you meet and know, who is or isn’t attracted to your subject matter, the lack of accurate research info on agents and editors true tastes and strong biases, the PR fog, and many more random factors play a huge role in getting published. Is there a group of writers who achieve consistent publishing success at a high level? Yes, a very tiny group , and within that group are often wildly improbable stories of random chance, super-human perseverance, or luck and timing. The near-total absence of reason, logic, or objective method is a far more dominant trend in those success stories than a writer buckling down, re-structuring his/her thinking, and going back to the pen or keyboard to turn out noteworthy work that wasn’t there before.

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