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Say Goodbye to Digital Distractions

How I’m turning away from lotus flowers in order to produce.

Podcast Episode #25

My name is Naomi Shibles and I’m here to tell you Why I Need This Author Gig.

With each episode, I’ll share a little bit about my writing journey, sprinkled with some anecdotes so that we can share a laugh.

In this episode, I cover:

  • Writing retreat takeaways

  • Taking back my time

  • The elusive purple coat dress


My writing retreat was amazing!

Here is a little gallery of pics:

SCBWI Carolinas Fall Retreat, Camp Dogwood on Lake Norman

Last week, I told you about how I set goals for this event, and they were very much business-related. I love writing. I was born write and can’t help but do it. But it can also bring me financial success.

If you do what you love, you never work a day in your life. Isn’t that how the adage goes? Well, this is it for me. And while I’ve almost always made my living from writing, I’m ready for fame and fortune. I’m ready to thrive in my writing career. And I want to do it through writing fiction—not journalism.

Why am I telling you all of this? Because my key takeaways from the retreat were informed by these goals. And to achieve them, I need to focus on my stories as products. That means that things are going to be a little bit different around here.

I’ll still publish this weekly podcast, because I’d miss you too much if I didn’t. And I’ll still pop up on socials if I feel inspired. But the majority of my time will be spent crafting stories. I’m going to spend less time on Canva. I’m going to lay off making TikToks.

No more new projects until I’ve sold my current inventory.

Ruthless efficiency is the name of the game.

You all know that I read my monthly horoscope on Susan Miller, and she promised that 2023 was going to be the best year of my life. Well the year is almost over, so I need to make whatever that “best” thing is happen!

As writers, we never really know if we’re headed in the right direction (pun intended) with what we create. We use our writing to connect first with ourselves, and then hope our work goes on to connect with others. I received a small nod toward being on the right path (another pun, SNS) at the retreat and am slightly taken aback by how fiercely motivated I am to follow through and make something happen with my YA Cozy Fantasy manuscript.

Sometimes, all we need is a little nudge.

So join me in getting down to the business of writing. Some of you might be knee-deep in NaNoWriMo; others may be shooting out queries before everyone shuts down for the holidays. And some may be feeling a little bit blue and unmotivated. I’m here to tell you to pull it together and write!

Shoutout to some amazing, inspiring women who generously shared their knowledge at the retreat: Kelly Dyksterhouse, Karla Valenti, Ann Rose (Go Aztecs!), and Alison Weiss—you are goddesses!

If any of you are disappointed at potentially seeing less of me while I march toward victory, here’s a mini embarrassing anecdote involving a celebrity:

One time in the early 90s I was hosting at a restaurant and Corin Nemec from the TV show, Parker Lewis Can't Lose, checked in for his reservation. Three things happened at once:

  1. I looked straight into the dazzling smile of an actor who I had a huge crush on and my face turned magenta.

  2. I noticed that his date was:

    1. Gorgeous (So cool)

    2. Gorgeous with really short hair (Should I cut my hair?)

    3. Wore the coolest deep purple coat dress (I need that dress—where can I get it?)

  3. My brain imploded and I stood gaping at them for a moment instead of taking them to their table…until they looked at me with questioning expressions.

I never found that purple coat dress.

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