Monday, 29 August 2011

Know Your Strengths (and Weaknesses)!

I’ve come to terms. I’ve realized that I can’t do it all. And if I try to do it all, there’s a big mess to clean up later and I feel like a failure. I had to learn to leave well enough alone, and just do what I do best. Most people know their strengths – what they’re good at, what they excel at. We try to hide our weaknesses under the rug, like an unwanted part of ourselves that we’re ashamed of. But our weaknesses are part of us, and should be acknowledged. This is what makes us human, and allows other people to carry the ball for us by using their strengths.

When I was checking out all there was to learn and digest about uploading my books as ebooks to on-line bookstores such as Amazon or Smashwords, I didn’t realize the work involved in doing the task. It was daunting, but I was determined. Too much information filtered through my mind until my head was ready to explode. I knew what I was good at – writing. I loved all the aspects of storytelling – the researching, planning, preparing, setting up, creating characters and organizing the content of a story. I realize writing (at least if you’re looking to get published) is a business. I also know that there are many hats to wear during the publishing process. Editing, cover book art, marketing, formatting and conversion, financing, proof reading, fact checking to name a few, are all part of that process. And I know what I’m good at, and what I’m not good at enough to know when to pass the baton to the next person who can help me get my book(s) in the hands of readers. I guess that’s really why I decided to submit my manuscript to a publishing company who handles both ebooks and traditional books. I realized I couldn’t take on more than I could handle or my productivity and quality would suffer. In the long run it was better for me to delegate responsibility wisely in order to get the job done. I owe it to my readers.

So remember to acknowledge your strengths and embrace your weaknesses. Trust me. You’ll feel so much lighter and happier for doing so.

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