I’m between contracts, at a crossroad in my career, wondering what to do next. Should I continue to write the same comfortable stories with characters I know and love? Or should I leave my comfort zone and try something new and bold? I decided to throw the question out to the Universe and see what developed.

I read Napoleon Hill’s Think, and Grow Rich, and I’m trying his advice. The hardest part is in the initial draft – figuring out what I really want. Try putting your biggest desire into a one-sentence pitch to the Universe. I can guarantee you it’s even harder than a one-minute elevator pitch to an agent. I’ve done five revisions on that single sentence that Hill assures me will change my life. I’m ready to rock and roll.

Next, I have to throw my wish into the great listening sky and boldly demand that I receive my wildest dream. Of course, I have to pay a price for it, unlike those who practice from The Secret. They have only to wish hard enough and whatever they want becomes theirs. Nothing in my life has been that easy. Hill’s advice is to put that life-altering sentence out to the Universe, really mean every word of it, assume it’s on the way, and set a plan in motion to give something in return for the cold cash that will be flooding your mailbox.

The giving-to-receive part of the plan is the problem. I’m willing, but I’ve had so many incoming messages about what I should write next, I can’t sift through the bedrock to find the piece of gold. Which random idea am I to follow? Which one will lead me down the path to financial gain and personal glory? And which one will cast me into the abyss?

I might have too much time on my hands. I should be writing short stories and proposals and guest blogging. Instead I’m waiting and walking and having conversations with someone in my head that I’m pretty sure is just me.

I love to write, I want to write, but I also want to make a difference in lots of lives. The only certain in my future is that I will continue to write stories. A fan sent an email last week. She’d been critically ill for four months and said the only time she laughed and felt good was when she was reading my Yooper series. I could have cried. What a relief to know that I had affected someone that way. I want to do it over and over again.

So my request is out there. I know the plan is coming. Tomorrow, I’m going to write something, not sure what, plenty of ideas, hope I chose wisely just like Indiana Jones did when he selected the right goblet. It’s all in the believing. Anything is possible once we know what we want and how to get there. Sounds easy. It’s not.

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Comment by Deb Baker on September 13, 2007 at 4:26am
Yesterday, after posting this blog, my agent called to tell me that Berkley would like another book in the doll series. Must have been the right thing, since it came at the right time. But they want it by December! Yikes!
Comment by Naomi Hirahara on September 13, 2007 at 3:14am
What a beautiful photograph. And so appropriate for your essay.

You are so prolific! I can't imagine writing two series books in one year.

It's interesting that you are taking a pause now to reassess. I've done the same myself and so happy that I did. Writing short stories for me was helpful in switching gears. In terms of determining what path will lead to "financial gain and personal glory," I think it's close to impossible to predict. Write what you feel called to write. That energy will result in something good, I'm sure.
Comment by Jeff Markowitz on September 12, 2007 at 10:08pm
Deb -
You've given me quite a lot to think about this morning. Good luck.

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