Been thinking of the Nike slogan lately.

There’s so much darn wisdom in those three little words.

One of the things you need in this writing field, besides a complete misunderstanding of the odds of success, is someone at your back that will push you to do things you kind of, sort of, feel scared and/or intimidated by.

It would be great if the world just beat a path to your door now, wouldn’t it. But that’s not the case.

People it seems can very well carry on their lives without ever  having heard of you or your work.

And sometimes I think it’s crazy that I want to write stories that are so good, so excellent that they simply HAVE to track them down and read them or else their lives will be the poorer for it.

I know, I know, I’m smiling to myself even as I type that.

The  nerve, eh?

That’s the old guy critic in the back of my head speaking. He’s saying loud and clear, “Who the hell do you think you are???”

I don’t even bother arguing any more, because from the little success I have had, great literature doesn’t come from big loud actions. It seems to come about almost by accident.

For ten years I was telling my version of the Big Red Lollipop story (you can watch it here) and then my editor asked me to rewrite the story in Rubina’s perspective, wrote it in fifteen minutes and voila, it became the hit it is.

And Wanting Mor didn’t even seem to be marketable to me. I just wrote it to find out what would happen to this poor abandoned girl in Afghanistan.

In both of those cases I never set out to write something fantastic. I just did the job.

But when I was done with Wanting Mor and it didn’t achieve the success that Big Red Lollipop did, I felt tired. Exhausted!

And I might have mentioned before that I never came closer to quitting the profession of writing than I did back then.

You write your heart out and yeah, some people notice, but not EVERYONE!

And then it’s back to the drawing board, start all over again, find something that stirs the passions within me, and hope to God that the story comes out good.

Anyway, the point I’m trying to make in my long rambling way, is that success is a series of kicks in the pants, just go and do it. Even if you probably WON’T succeed, even if the old man critic in the back of you mind laughs and says, “Probably won’t??? You mean DEFINITELY WON’T” just go and do it anyway.

There’s an old saying, ‘nothing ventured, nothing gained’.

When I first started out in the biz I applied for lots of arts grants. I fancied my grants were even well written.

Just over the weekend though I cleaned out ALL my files and I came across the grant applications I’d written and oh they were sad!

The chutzpah!

The unmitigated gall I possessed!

And yet now I’ve often been fortunate to receive grants, especially travel grants!!!

And to be perfectly honest, I still possess an awful lot of chutzpah.

Because I’m not there yet.

I’m not even close.

There’s so much more I want to do.

And even though it’s scary, I just get up and start doing it.

I will continue to ‘just do it’.

Chipping away at the stories I want to write. Clearing my throat till I say the things I need to say.

Even if it’s scary.

Even if it’s crazy, because fundamentally I do believe that the greatest authors don’t have anything that I don’t have. I just have to reach down deep and pull out my best.

And just keep keepin’ on.

Just do it.