Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Let's face it . . .

by Nicole Petrino-Salter


Not every one of us will experience the common and accepted version of success with our work. Some of us will experience “moderate” success with our writing, and others of us will be considered unsuccessful in our endeavors. Some will receive reviewer accolades, contest awards, status-setting titles (i.e. bestseller), and great sales while others of us will not.

So what defines the criteria for success? There are multiple contributions to defining success, some of which depend on personal goals and achievements. Generally speaking, books that sell thousands of copies are considered successful. Books that win awards, make the NYT Bestseller List, generate a buzz, or get made into a movie are deemed successful. And as the cliché goes, who can argue with success? 

Authors can definitely argue with success. If you listen to dedicated writers, you will often hear how poorly written several trend-setting, very successful series and stand-alone novels have been. Having labored over their craft and stories, authors reading some popular novels wind up in frustration, eye-rolling, shaking their heads, and just plain disappointment. “Go figure” might be the consensus of some of the recent successful novels.

Does it change the author’s response to success, his/her reaction to what they do with their stories? You tell me.

I’ve had to come to the conclusion that success is that indefinable place where the Lord’s design for me meets my wishful thinking for me and the result is I bow to God’s formula for success. For some, this sounds like a copout or an easy remedy for lousy responses to my novels. But it’s not. It’s a hard fought for place where I can set aside the worldly aspirations of my dreams and realize the only ones that truly matter are God’s purposes in my life, be it writing or just plain living.



For a Drama Queen, one who would love to stand at podiums and deliver inspired speeches, discuss each character in my novels, and generally celebrate my 15 minutes of fame, believe me, it’s not an easy place to find. But it’s the best place for me to be. I can’t speak for you.

Nicole Petrino-Salter writes love stories with a passion. You can find her here most days.

7 comments:

Julie Lessman said...

Hey, Nicole, you said:
"I’ve had to come to the conclusion that success is that indefinable place where the Lord’s design for me meets my wishful thinking for me and the result is I bow to God’s formula for success. For some, this sounds like a copout or an easy remedy for lousy responses to my novels. But it’s not. It’s a hard fought for place where I can set aside the worldly aspirations of my dreams and realize the only ones that truly matter are God’s purposes in my life, be it writing or just plain living."

WOW! You and I have just circled the same wagon, my friend, and I heartily concur -- we ARE in the best place!! Only took me 8 months of sabbatical to figure it out.

LOL ... and I'm a DQ too ... although I refer to myself as a CDQ: caffeinated drama queen. :)

EXCELLENT POST!!

Hugs,
Julie

Nicole said...

Thank you from my heart, Julie. I would argue you've experienced success. You're admired, respected, a bestselling author . . . but still, if you had to find my described place, I honor your journey and decision because it's a heart-rending place to discover. And, yeah, it's the best place. (If I used the C before DQ, it would stand for Coca-Cola. ;) )

Brenda Anderson said...

Well said, Nicole!

God's definition of success is most likely not our own, and just because we may not achieve worldly-defined success, that does not mean we'll have failed. I don't think most of us will see the results of our obedience until eternity.

Nicole said...

I don't either, Bren. I just hope I have some good results.

Thanks for your thoughtful comment, Bren.

Tami said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Tami said...

Hi Nicole,
I have had similar thoughts on some of the 'best-sellers' that have won great acclaim for mediocre authors. I just remind myself that, like Lot, we must stay true to God's way, so that we can remain the 'salt of the earth, not a 'pillar' of society. Take comfort from Matthew 5:13-16 & Galatians 6:9 and keep up the good work!

Nicole said...

Thanks, Tami. You're a gem. Great scriptures.