Finding the Right Role Model
Role Models are people who have done what you want to do. Picking the right one can provide you with guidance and encouragement. Picking the wrong one can be detrimental.
Many people pick someone at the pinnacle of their career, comparing that person’s master works against their own beginning work. This is discouraging. Pick someone who is just a little further on than you, or look at your best-selling, award winning favorite artist’s first work. Read up about how they got there. Writer’s Digest has a segment on break-in authors, with a quick summary of how they published their first book.
Pick a role model you can emulate. That means, don’t pick someone who got there by some sheer fluke, some wild confluence of circumstance that would seem improbable in a movie. If he got his success because he accidentally dropped his manuscript in the elevator that the editor got trapped in for three hours, it’s probably not something that can be recreated. On the other hand, even the most luckiest of breaks have lessons to impart. As the saying goes, you can’t win the lottery if you don’t buy a ticket. That guy who dropped his manuscript? He had a finished manuscript.
I need a few role models to go from in my own life. I need to find a published writer who is also a working mom. What tricks can she provide for time management, working through distractions, working while half-asleep and dealing with self-doubt?
I also could use a blogging role-model. Who has a blog that is getting traffic? Not some well-established blog that has thousands of loyal followers, but someone just a bit further along and has commenters who are not friends or family members?
What role models could help you? Any goal can use one. I’m thinking about role models for my friend’s goals….
- an actor in a community play
- someone who ran in a 5K
- a craft-fair vendor
- a recent graduate of the college program you want to apply for
- a singer in a local band
- a local playwright
- newly published comic book artists
- a local coffee shop owner who’s been in business for a year
- someone who has just adopted a child
- an artist who did a gallery show