Recap of the “Catch Your Dreams” writing workshop and brainstorm for the Scottsdale Society of Women Writers, Jan. 26, 2011
By Ann Narcisian Videan
Do you have a life dream you want to catch and live, but can’t get past everyday reality? Need a jump-start to move you toward your goal?
In our January brainstorming session, we talked about how – by listening to intuitions, using available resources and taking action – you can find true fulfillment, just as I have, and also as my heroine does in my novel Rhythms & Muse.
I asked participants to express their life dream and, with input from everyone in the room, we shared the ideas, resources and support recorded in this blog post.
Expect to gain at least one, but probably many, positive action items to help you take the next step with your writing, or life goal.
Writing Goal #1: Publish a historical fiction book for young adults.
Next step: Get started.
|Research how it’s done.||• Read books on the topic.
• Attend professional meetings. Scottsdale Society of Women Writers is a good start.
|Take a writing class.||Check out Gotham online writing workshops.|
|Contact Stella Pope Duarte, author of If I Die in Juarez.||Duarte teaches classes at Paradise Valley and Phoenix community colleges.|
|Contact Jessica McCann. (Glendale, AZ writer)||McCann‘s book All Different Kinds of Free releases April.|
Writing Goal #2: Publish My Book(s)
Next step: Get out of overwhelm.
|Hang out with others who will support and encourage your efforts.||Start with the Scottsdale Society of Women Writers.|
|Set up one next step and do only that.||Then, set one more step and do that.|
|Listen, and ask for what you want.||Interview authors, get to know others who already do what you want to do.|
|Protect your rights.||If you wrote it, you own it. You may also copyright works legally, using online forms.|
|Find an illustrator.||Ask other writers, visit illustrators’ association meetings, and participate in pertinent blogs.|
|Never give up!||Example: Misty Hyman, Mesa-born swimmer who swam 22,000 miles to earn Olympic gold.|
Life Goal #1: Buy cottage in Maine
Next step: Find the money
|Ideas||How to apply the ideas to a writing goal|
|Visualize yourself in the place you want to be, in clear detail, and write it down.||Visualize your writing goal, in clear detail, and write it down.|
|Create a picture board or three-ring binder with magazine cutouts showing what you want.||Create a picture board or three-ring binder with magazine cutouts showing samples of other’s works or ideas representing what you want to create.|
|Never say never.||Indeed!|
|Make a list of ways to obtain your cottage without money.||Make a list of ways you can accomplish your writing goal, elements and resources you might need.|
|Rent a cabin/become part of the community.||Immerse yourself in the community, connect with other industry people associated with what you want to do. Ask for input and ideas!|
|See what trades are available.||See if you could create a mutual support system with someone else. You help them, they help you. Perhaps a critique partner.|
|Find a realtor/private person and switch places for a summer.||Find a critique partner, agent, editor, publisher, writer’s group, or others with whom to swap information and skills.|
|Develop a pen pal in the area.||Find a mentor who’s done what you want to do, and meet consistently.|
|Create a blog with entries about making the cottage purchase happen.||Create a blog with entries about making your writing dream come true.|
|Start a savings account and fill it with change or any extra money.||Divide the work into small, reasonable steps so you don’t get overwhelmed. Or collect needed notes or tools as you work forward.|
|Explore the costs and set a budget.||Explore what’s involved in your next step and set aside the resources (time, money, people) to make it happen.|
|Keep the mindset, “I have enough.” (use play money)||KNOW you can obtain anything you need to meet your goal.|
|Keep in mind what it represents to you.||Picture yourself after accomplishing the goal and hold that image.|
Life Goal #2 Manifest a Civics Program for inmates.
Next step: Bring Sandra Day O’Conner into the movement.
|Ideas||How to apply the ideas to a writing goal|
|Contact Sandra Day O’Conner.||Get to know other successful writers.|
|Tie in your contact to your book, or maybe the book she wrote with her granddaughter.||Existing work can open doors. Think about how you can leverage what you’ve already done.|
|Andrea Beaulieu (http://www.yourauthenticvoice.com/) knows Dick Snell, who went to college with Sandra Day O’Conner.||Ask others if they would be willing to make introductions with others in their network (an editor, agent, publisher, mentor etc.).|
• Sandra Day O’Conner to participate
• Everyone around you to help
(What’s the worst thing that could happen?)
(What’s the worst thing that could happen?) 😀
|Sandra Day O’Conner may simply be a stepping stone for you to get to the person who can’t wait to help you reach your goal. (Supreme Court Judge Rebecca Burch? Or someone else!)||Keep your options open and listen for ideas to move you in the right direction with your writing.|
Do you have other ideas or resources to share? Please comment.
Do you have a goal for which you’d like others’ help? Ask here and let’s see if we can’t get you moving forward with help from our “village.”
As word merchants I believe we should find a better word for what you were referring to. Dreams are the thoughts and images that pass through our minds in our sleep, so far different from the wishes and aspirations and hopes we have in our waking hours. Living in a dreamworld is not reality, and yet we were trying to project realisitic solutions to –dreams? No, these were concrete desires and wishes that we addressed.
Dee, to me one of the beauties of being a word merchant is creative license. In my mind, “Catch Your Dream” or “Make Dreams Come True” creates more excitement and piques more interest than something literal. My hope is that those pursuing a cherished aspiration, ambition, or ideal will happily play amidst the spirit of the word “dream” here, and find concrete steps to move their sincerest desires from the wishful state into real life.
I am a new member of Scottsdale Society of Women Writers. I joined this group of wonderful and talented women writers in order to learn how I might be able to fulfill my dream of publishing my current and future books and poems. Thank you for speaking on the subject of making our dreams come true and for conducting a brainstorming session for each of us who presented our goals. After receiving so many suggestions, I feel I am able to move forward in taking the necessary steps to accomplish my goals and, thereby, fulfilling my dreams!
Thanks again Ann for the talk – I like the idea of Dreams Come True – first a dream, then a goal, then an objective – the what – and then the strategy the how to do it and voila! There you are living your dreams that were put in to action.
My dream is to have the courage to write the memoir about my relationship with my mother and be able to set the goals needed to attain that reality.
My objective is to teach people about Alzheimer’s disease from a daughter’s perspective and to be free to discuss my non-existant relationship with her prior to the onset of that dreaded disease and why that was – very personal things about her and our life, but things that can be healing for many.