Go Big or Not at All … not really, but it feels like it

For a while now, I’ve been writing about working daily toward my creative goals. Recently, I had reason to summarize the events of my life over the last year in a short email to an acquaintance. He replied:

Oh my word! You go big or not at all, don’t you??!! That’s a lot of change! How exciting.

Although I no longer believe in burning the candle at both ends, his reply made me see how steadily and mightily these baby steps have added up over time. When compressed into a short email, it’s the diamond-version of my efforts sparkling instead of the dusty coal of daily effort.

So, I decided to be brave and tell you all what I hope to achieve next. I was avoiding making any concrete goals until I put in some effort, built some muscle, and got a few projects brewing. Recently, however, I noticed myself dawdling, sitting on the precipice once again, afraid to take the leap of faith to actually finish some projects and put them out in the world for others to see.

So here goes:

I’m going to self-publish my children’s books or rather “Stories You Can Color.” You’ll see a new page on this site soon under that same title, with images and some text from each book.

I’m still working on the technicalities of how to print them, but I’m applying to sell my books at Portland’s “Crafty Wonderland” in May, and if I get in, I have a lot to learn and prepare, which scares me but motivates me too. If I don’t get in, the application process will have served to get me moving on printing them and sharing them with you.

And then … I’m going to open a shop on Etsy to sell my “Stories You Can Color” as well as other drawings and writings. That learning curve is steep, but I think at some point, I really do have to “go big” and dive in, or I’ll never take the leap.

Also, remember the essay that I let the wind carry away? To my great surprise, the solution seems to be to make it a book. So, I’m taking part in Blogging from A-to-Z in April (I’m currently #468 on the sign-up list–yowza!). Every day but Sunday, I will publish a short post about why daily creative effort matters and what magic comes from it. Each post must correspond to a letter of the alphabet, starting with A, which will be “allure: the alluring promise of tomorrow,” about not putting off your art for later, but getting to it right now.

Then, I’m going to compile it all into a book … maybe a digital book, maybe a print book, maybe self published, maybe find a publisher, I don’t know, but I’m going to make the effort and see what happens. The book version will also be illustrated … I think.

Lastly, my friend and I are going to start teaching two writing workshops: one mixes writing and meditation (we’re working on the title) and the other is Writing Your Food Memoir.

Phew, okay, that’s it for now. Making this public feels daunting. It would be easier to leave these goals noted in my journal and tucked in a drawer, and yet, I need the push to follow through.

Here goes …

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18 Responses to Go Big or Not at All … not really, but it feels like it

  1. Rose L. says:

    WOW! That is a lot of work! Several ladies in the Chrysalis group have self published and know the ropes on doing digital, paperback and best routes. Pat Lichen, the leader, can aim you! Lisa N. in the group has LOTS of knowledge! If I were going to do it, I would go to them!

  2. Exciting to self publish your children’s book, it’s what we did! Thank you for putting your plans out there for us all to share, it’s inspiring.

  3. heatherseattle says:

    Trista – so so so proud of you and motivated by you. much love!

  4. nf says:

    I LOVE Crafty Wonderland! Glad you put your goals out here, Trista!

  5. YESSS!!! So excited for you, Trista! On the off-chance you haven’t considered it for Stories You Can Color: what about the IPRC? I don’t know how time-consuming that would be (haven’t tried it myself yet), but I have friends who’ve produced their own books there. Or maybe look into how artist Benjamin Dewey produces his chapbooks? And finally, would Rose City Comic Con be another place to sell Stories You Can Color? I know other artists who share tables there. Could put you in touch if you’re interested.

    • tristac says:

      Sione — Thanks for these great ideas! I do have IPRC on my list of places. It might be too time consuming, but I’m also thinking of taking their design/tech classes to continue developing these books. And, I would have never thought of ComicCon….I will be in touch if I get up the nerve!

  6. Anonymous says:

    Great post and even better plan. Good for you for jumping off the cliff with your dreams and aspirations in hand. You are an inspiration to many.

    • tristac says:

      Thank you, Anon. I now have an illustration to draw — me jumping while clutching “dreams” in one hand and “aspirations” in the other. Thanks for your support.

  7. Linda Vogt says:

    Hurray for you, Trista! I am excited to see you making this goal for yourself and going for it. You have so much to offer! Can’t wait to buy your books for my great niece, who is four months old. 😊

  8. Congratulations on the new book! Best of luck getting into the fair.

    I never realize how much I am getting done until I make a list. It’s good to do that because we have so much we want to do, it’s easy to get frustrated and forget how much we are getting done.

    Now, I am also bringing a copy and pasted message from the A-Z reveal team to remind us all to show our revealing badge (I added mine right before I came here!)

    I’m just stopping in to say from the AtoZ Challenge. Wondered if you’re still planning on Revealing your Theme on March 23? In case you need to find the Theme Reveal Badge, here’s the link.
    Hope to see you on the 23rd!

  9. Pingback: Going Big: an update | All But The Kitchen Sink

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