A Writer’s Need for Positive Thinking

Yesterday, I did three programs at schools in Ferriday, Louisiana for Condordia Parish. Two programs were at the Junior High, one at the elementary school. I had a grand time, and evidently the kids did too. Here is a little blurb I received regarding the day:

Mr. Pittman:
On behalf of the Ferriday Junior High School administration, staff, and students, I want to thank you for a great performance on December 13. It was a different kind of music for our students and it only enhanced their cultural being. They are still talking about what great skills you have in playing the guitar and the fact that grandma being run over by a reindeer [one of the songs I did was “Grandma Got Run Over by a Reindeer”] was so funny to them. The English teachers are making plans to get your books as we speak.

Again, thank you for taking the time to invest in the future of our children.

Dorothy Marsalis
Curriculum Coordinator

I had a two-hour break between schools, so I worked at the Library. While there, I read a book entitled Do This, Get Rich by Jim Britt, a popular motivational speaker and guru. I took extensive notes. I thought I’d include a list of a few of those points/tasks that especially relate to a writer’s business:

1. Make a road map of your life. Reflect on the last ten years of your life and what, related to your passion, has really been accomplished. (Egads! 10 years as a teacher I have!) I started this “road map” last spring, but it was sketchy. It’s coming together much better now.

2. Create a mission statement. Make the changes required to succeed. Nothing in your life will change unless you do. Know that the person you become determines what life hands you next. I’ve made some changes. (Quitting smoking was one.) I still have more changes to make.

3. Have a success role model. Write a money biography of your life. Imagine yourself prosperous (or at least in the state you want to be in). How would your life/days be different? Create or be a part of a team to help you succeed.

4. Spend time only on what matters. Realize that trying harder and working more won’t always fix things as you only have so much time and energy.

5. Realize that conventional methods don’t work. Make choices, take risks. If you do things because you have “no choice,” then you are likely trapped. Be a problem solver.

6. Get ready for a wild ride!

I’ve read many “positive thinking” (better than “stinking thinking”) books like this through the years. Writing, and especially the writing business, is a brutal vocation. As I reflected on the need of a writer to stay motivated and energized, I realized that the two most influential books for me personally were See You at the Top by Zig Ziggler and The Greatest Salesman in the World by Og Mandino. If you need some motivation, I’d advise you obtain and read those.