The What-IF Game (Guest Post by Barbara Conelli, author of Chique Secrets of Dolce Amore)
June 28, 2012 in Book Club Possibility, Conelli Barbara, Helping Girls and Women Around the World, High School Teachers, Writing Skills Tags: book contest, Helping Women and Girls around the world, travel writing, WOW! blog tour
From Margo: I am so honored to have Barbara Conelli guest post with this wonderfully inspiring essay on turning around those annoying, negative WHAT IF questions and making them positive. Anyone can benefit from this post! She is using the book she wrote, Chique Secrets of Dolce Amore, to its fullest potential and living the best life she can!
To celebrate her latest book about loving life in Italy, she is offering great prizes. Here’s what you need to know before you read her post about those WHAT-IF questions.
1. A downloadable gift bag for every person who comments on this blog! (I love this idea!) So, what is a downloadable gift bag? You will receive this just for commenting (please leave your email address, so we can send these to you): Chique Virtual Tour: The Secret Gems of Italy Every Woman Must Know, First five chapters of Chique Secrets of Dolce Vita (her first book), First five chapters of Chique Secrets of Dolce Amore (her current book), Chique Blog Tour Special Gift (Only for the tour!): E-Book: The Most Romantic Chique Places to Fall in Love in (and with) Milan. (If you are a lover of Italy, leave a comment!)
2. Every person who leaves a comment will also be entered into a larger drawing for 1 Chique Journal (contest open internationally). Please leave your comment before 8:00 pm CST on Sunday, 7/1 for your chance to win. Comments can be questions, something about the what-if game, thoughts on Italy, pick me, etc.
3. Barbara is doing a bunch of fun stuff with her blog tour this summer, plus she has a book trailer video and more. Check out all the contests, book trailer, her website, etc, by going to WOW!’s blog and reading these two posts: Summer in Italy Contests and blog tour launch.
Don’t skip this article below. It’s wise!
From Barbara on the What-If game!
There are a few words I left out of my vocabulary many years ago, when I realized my verbal habits were my biggest creative roadblocks: I can’t. I should – I shouldn’t. I have to. And the most toxic verbal turn-off: WHAT IF.
For some reason, our ego, traditionally threatened by dreams, visions, aspirations, and creative endeavors of all kinds, seems to thrive on what-if scenarios. They are the fastest tool your inner gremlin uses when it wants you to fall off the wagon, hide under the duvet and cry, delete the new chapter, burn the submission package, cut your hair and swear off high heels.
“What if I’m no good? What if it doesn’t work out? What if my book doesn’t sell? What if I never make it? What if I can’t write? What if everyone hates my story? What if I get the worst reviews in history? What if my family gets upset?”
When your mind decides to play this dirty trick, it hurts. It stings. It discourages. Although most of the time our worst-case scenario is absolutely subjective and not based on any real facts, we often choose to go with the poisonous flow and give in to it.
The truth is that no one can guarantee things will always go the way you want. But no one can say they won’t. The what-if game can be fun if you learn to turn it around and use it for your own benefit. Not being able to predict the outcome belongs to the juicy adventure called life, and as you can’t really know what happens, why don’t you focus on the other part of the story?
“What if I’m great? What if it works out? What if my book becomes a bestseller? What if I can make it? What if I’m an excellent writer? What if everyone loves my story? What if I get five-star reviews? What if my family chooses to support me?”
You will never know unless you try, but focusing on the positive, creative what-if game, instead of the dreadful, scary worst-case scenarios, definitely improves your odds. As Henry Ford said: “Whether you think that you can, or that you can’t, you are usually right.” And he also said: “When everything seems to be going against you, remember that the airplane takes off against the wind, not with it.”
You have a gift to share. You have a passion that makes you feel alive. It is your birthright, and even your obligation, to use all the water in your beautiful well of creativity – generously, lovingly and fearlessly. The world is your sandbox, waiting for the castles you’re going to build. What would you do today if what-if didn’t matter?
So, don’t forget to leave a comment! And if you are interested in taking any online writing classes this summer, I am teaching social networking (beginners and advanced) and writing a middle grade novel (beginners and advanced). Go to the WOW! Classroom!