It’s been an amazing year for WildMind Creative. We’ve had the opportunity to work with some exceptional authors and interview some outstanding writers. Coming into a fresh new year it’s the perfect time to look back over all the interviews we’ve done and consolidate what we’ve learnt. So without any further ado here are our key takeaways from a year of author interviews.

This is part one, of a four-part series, to be released over the coming weeks: 

Part 1: Inspiration & Rejection in Writing

Part 2: Perseverance, Self-doubt & Isolation

Part 3: Marketing & Publishing

Part 4: Advice to New Authors

On Inspiration

Authors love the question of ‘what it’ and dreaming wide. Inspiration is everywhere if you look for it. Most of you pull stories from your day-to-day life, daydreams, music and intriguing situations.

‘Writing is my way to make sense of the world as well as a way to empty my mind of all the characters and stories in it. It can be a crowded place in there. Inspiration is all around us’ – Cherie Reich

‘Inspiration, to me, is most often birthed from life experience – the peaks, the valleys, the smooth seas and the storms. When I allow myself to draw from the well of my own life, I find inspiration flows infinitely more freely’ – Diana Anderson Tyler

‘Life itself, and the people, can be a really rich place to grab inspiration from.’ – E.J. Mellow

‘Life is my inspiration. I’ve made it a goal to live a story worth sharing so I can write stories worth telling.’ – Caroline George

‘Inspiration comes to me from many places, but one of my favorite games to play is asking what-if questions.’ – Christine Rains

‘Every adventure has a story that needs to be told even if it only happens in your imagination.’ – Maldivian Stephen

‘I draw most of my inspiration from the great stories I’ve read. Nothing makes me want to create more than finishing a book that’s changed the way I think about something.’ – Lindsey Ouimet

‘I find myself incredibly inspired after finishing a good book. There’s a spark that comes with wanting to become a better, funnier writer.’ – R. S. Grey

‘A lot of times it is a physical location. A picturesque neighborhood, moody forest, or magical waterfall might inspire a scene or a character. Then I just build around that.’ – Megan Gaudino

‘Listening to music definitely helps fuel my creative fire.’ – Jennifer Wilson

‘Since I can remember, music has been a gateway to my imagination.’ – Christine Rees

‘Music can inspire me and sometimes I’ll just have a strong sense of a character and know I need to write a book for them.’ – M. Pepper Langlinais

On Rejection

Beyond the ability to capture a reader’s imagination authors need to be able to overcome rejection. Many recommended taking some time to heal before moving on, while others prescribed copious amounts of chocolate.

‘You have to constantly remind yourself that rejection is a part of life.  Not everyone is going to like what you create.’ - Dana Fraedrich

‘You have to thicken your skin if you want survive any creative industry.’ – Jessica Hawkins

‘Don’t get discouraged. For that one spectacular ‘yes’, you might hear fifty ‘no’s.’ – Jennifer Wilson

‘Rejection is best met with a healthy dose of perspective. I let myself delve into the feelings for a day or two, really roll around in self-pity, and then it’s time to get some perspective on the situation.’ – R. S. Grey

‘It’s okay to get a little sad, but after that I suggest having a wall or folder available that showcases all the positive reviews and fan letters pertaining to your work. Stare at that and remember that you are good, creative and one of a kind, and no matter what, don’t let any of those haters keep you from writing.’ – E. J. Mellow

‘Have a little cry. Take a deep breath. Keep moving forward.’ – Sophie Elaine Hanson

‘Rejection is a rite of passage. You're not a real writer unless you've been rejected.’ – Abigail Shepherd

‘I have a cycle: I get upset, feel hurt, dejected, and then I rally. Call it stubbornness or determination or even thickheadedness, but I try to learn from the rejection and move right along.’ – Emily R. King

‘Be courageous. It’s hard to put yourself out there to be judged and possibly rejected but if you don’t try, you’ll never know what might have been.’ – Kathryn Berla

‘I allow a short period of self-pity. I bitch, I moan, I might even cry a little. And then I shake it off the best I can and remind myself that even the best writers and some of my favorites have heard no multiple times. No does not equal never.’ – Lindsey Ouimet

‘I keep telling myself this: I can control what I write, but I can’t control how people would accept my story.’ – E. Mellyberry

‘Don’t read reviews. The good ones will come to your attention and if you come across the bad ones, try to ignore them. If you must read reviews, read them when your next book is out so your focus has moved on and you hopefully won’t take the reviews so personally. Not everyone will like your work and that’s okay, but don’t let bad reviews stop you from achieving your next goal.’ – Nadia L. King

‘I have a glass of wine and something made of chocolate to get through a bad review. Then I go read all the low star reviews of my favorite authors. And if that doesn’t work, repeat the wine and chocolate.’ – Andrea R. Cooper

‘The first bad review I received gutted me. I had worked on that book for four years! I didn’t know what to do. Finally, out of desperation to calm my frazzled self I got on Amazon and pulled up Harry Potter. I clicked on the one-star reviews, and I sat there, and I read them ALL. That was a turning point for me. I realized it doesn’t matter how brilliant a book I write, it doesn’t matter if I wrote a Pulitzer winner, someone will hate it. In fact, lots of someones will hate it. I had to learn to let go of some of my need for affirmation, put my head down and do my work.’ – Devri Walls