After our brief discussion about career plans for writers in this post, I decided to do some research for a followup post. I know I definitely need direction where this is concerned, so I thought some of my readers might too.
I realized, however, that it's highly doubtful I could put together and write a post that would be better presented than the material I found, so I've decided to leave you with some fabulous links that you can peruse at your leisure...
Now, I know I've mentioned Holly Lisle's website at least once before, but it really is fabulous and chock-full of great advice. I started my search there, quite certain she would have something on developing a career plan, and lo and behold, she did. You can find the article and others: here. Her thoughts on "Modeling Success" were particularly interesting to me. I've done this a bit already, but not to the extent Ms. Lisle proposes.
Next I did a general Google search. I knew there had to be other writers out there researching and creating career plans for themselves and while the results weren't plentiful, I did find a few.
This article is informative, extensive, and fairly straightforward. Quite a bit of it is advice you've already heard again and again, no doubt, if you've been doing your research on the business, but it certainly has a lot to offer. I thought the suggestion of "learn how to critique others' writing" was a good one (something I'm not good at) and the author even has an article called "How to Critique Fiction," which I'll be reading as soon as I have time.
I also found this essay, written by Jenny Cruise, on finding an agent. I decided to post it, though, because it isn't just your typical finding-an-agent advice. It also offers some great questions that you should ask yourself before or during your agent-seeking, which could be incorporated into a career plan.
This writer, Rhonda Stapleton, went so far as to "pay if forward" by putting her career plan template on her blog. It looks like a great starter template and I think I'll start my own plan using her template as a model. Check it out!
Finally, I wanted to bring attention to Shelli and her blog Market My Words, (Shelli stopped by my blog yesterday - don't you just love making new friends?) because she has some GREAT marketing advice gracing her blog. For those of you that are working on marketing yourselves, and for those like me, who pay attention to it as a scary spot on the horizon, it could be very beneficial. (Thanks for stopping by and allowing me to discover your blog Shelli!)
Before concluding this, I want to point out that making a career plan is an ongoing, ever-changing process. You may even find yourself moving forward and then backwards again in order to re-assess steps that faltered under the weight of heftier future steps you *thought* you were ready for. It can happen to the best of us. So, develop the steps you need to reach your goals, but prepare yourself to be multi-directional with them - backwards is not necessarily a bad thing!
Let me know if any of these links help you, and feel free to post any other helpful links you may have on the subject!
(I'm going to get back to my NaNo novel now.)