Consider this post an unofficial, unsolicited response to this AWP post, The Eight Questions Writers Should Ask Themselves.
- Are you a good literary citizen? Yes and no. I’d say that I’m on the higher end of the literary citizen spectrum, but I’m not where I would like to be. I would like to volunteer with one literary-based local organization, but time constraints prove challenging. I could be doing more, both online and in the Phoenix area.
- Are you more invested in the business of publishing than the practice of writing? No. Although I may consider how people would respond to a smaller piece or a manuscript and I certainly want to be published, it isn’t my sole or primary motivation for writing.
- Is your writing ready to be submitted? Will you stand behind your work not only today, but well into the future?I’ve had success pitching at conferences, but as a perennial perfectionist I hesitate to say it’s ready for submission today. I don’t tend to put anything out there unless I’m ready for others to tear it apart, but standing behind my work is something that plays into whether it’s time to let other eyes take a look.
- Are you willing to be critiqued and/or edited? I read something…somewhere…about an 80% rule: submit your work when its 80% there. With works-in-progress, I submit for critiques/edits expecting and hoping for a critical eye to improve the work on a micro- or macro- level. And of course, I always open the door for feedback with pieces I post here.
- How will you deal with failure? Well, as a learning opportunity. I’ve even blogged about the necessity of rejection to the creative process.
- Are you reading diversely? I haven’t read a whole lot of anything so far in 2014, but I do make a conscious effort to vary up genres, authors, themes, and writing styles. I’m enjoying Susan Bordo’s The Creation of Anne Boleyn right now.
- Are you taking risks? I think so, although some of it hasn’t quite made it on the blog yet. My content of late has been a little too “easy” for me.
- Do you believe in your writing? Yes.
How might you respond to some of these questions? Does this give you additional reason to challenge yourself?