Monday, March 1, 2010


By Karen Cino

In the beginning of February, after carefully following individual submission guidelines, I sent out my “packages” via the internet. Then, I closed the top of my laptop and went about my business doing my chores. An hour later I came home, checked my emails and there sat two emails. Both responses were thank you, but no thanks. Okay…that was a blow; a discouraging blow. Now, the challenge: Do I drown in my rejections? Do I throw in the towel? These are two of many questions that I’m sure we have all asked ourselves at one time or another. I’ll share with you my own remedy for getting over the feel-sorry-for-me pity party.

Take a walk. I find that the best thing to do for myself is to take a walk. By now everyone must be tired of me talking about my long walks. I know it sounds crazy, but that walk, no matter if it’s short or long, is all I need to rejuvenate. So picture me tying my Timberland boots and strolling through the mounds of snow, opening up my mind, along with numbing my fingers and toes. But it works. Believe me, it works. After that walk, I was cold but recharged and ready to continue working on my next project.

Get dressed. Are you sitting in sweat pants and tee shirt with slippers on? It’s no wonder you can’t get anything down on paper. Fluff your hair, get dressed as if you’re going out. That’s right! Add the accessories -- the belt, earrings and necklaces. Take a glance in the mirror, then sit behind your computer and start writing. You’ll be surprised how playing dress up can inspire your muse.

Keep a journal. I bought myself a monthly planner and journal. Every night I write what I did during the day. How many words I wrote or how many pages I revised. And if I did nothing, I write the word nothing in the planner. Then the last thing I do is write a short journal entry. It can be two lines or two pages about nothing or a plot idea. Whatever it is, sometimes it is the only time I write in a day.

Keep Writing. Did you ever fantasize what it would be like to be someone else or wish your life was different? Be that fantasy. Sit behind your computer, do your research and write that story. The best writing exercise is to write.

Following my own advice, I am walking, getting dressed, keeping a journal and writing, as I continue to follow my dreams, all while I do revisions on my novel MYSTICAL WONDERS and I await responses on ROSES. Join me.♥

Presently, Karen is serving as President of the RWA New York City Chapter. She keeps her muse alive by walking every morning down at the boardwalk. Currently, she is shopping for a home for her novel ROSES, and is working on her next novel MYSTICAL WONDERS.


  1. Great post, Karen! I love your advice. I must admit, the walk is a biggie for me, too. Just getting out of the house, and remembering that there is life beyond agents and editors. I love the getting dressed one, too...maybe I'll try that sometime. LOL!

  2. Those are great ideas, Karen. The dressing "for business" is on target. You lifted my spirits. "Loved your partial but your manuscript isn't quite right for us!" Heard it all!

  3. Karen, we must be separated at birth! My morning run is vital to my writing life -- it gets the positive energy flowing and creates the perfect zone for working out those knotty plot conundrums. Walk, run, bike, or skip: there's nothing like exercise in the fresh air.

    And you're absolutely spot-on about dressing for business! Our mothers were really on to something with that "good grooming" lecture -- looking good makes you confident, and confidence is the magic elixir for getting things done.

  4. Just sent something off and feel like I'm in limbo land. I'm making a cup of tea, but I don't like tea much. Have already swilled the coffee quota for the day. Outside my window, the woods still look thick with snow, but not as much. Rocks and twiggy-grassy stubble are poking through. The trees are dry and bare and the sun is shimmering on the Bronx River. Think I'll take off my flip-flops, put on my Uggs and go for a stroll.

  5. Thanks for stopping by Ladies. With the warmer weather coming in, I'm hoping to get more writing and walking in.