Do. The. Work!

As I’ve mentioned previously here, it’s been a challenging couple of months for us at home, so I’ve only been able to post sporadically here. I’m hoping that when the new year arrives, things will settle down. But for now, I just wanted to share a thought with you. that thought is:

If you want to do something, the only way you can accomplish it is by actually DOING IT.

I left my position as production director for a 5-station radio group in the Concord, NH area (and the  steady paycheck that went with it) 2 1/2 years ago to work from home as a voice artist and be a stay-at-home dad. I also wanted to spend time developing my children’s writing.

Lullabye cover
The first children’s book in which I’ll see my name! Many thanks to Lee Bennett Hopkins for having the faith in me to ask if I would be willing to write a poem for this.

Well, as of today, I have 8 children’s poems set to be published next year in 6 different publications: 7 poems in 5 different children’s anthologies and one poem in “Highlights” magazine.

These aren’t vanity books or unpaid literary journals, mind you – not that there’s anything wrong with those – I’m getting paid for these things. Children’s writing may be a passion, a talent, and a creative outlet for me…but I plan on making it a career.

I share this news not to boast, but to encourage anyone who has debated whether or not to pursue a dream for fear of failure. I can tell you with 100% assurance that you’ll definitely fail if you don’t try.

Author/poet Jane Yolen and former U.S. Children’s Poet Laureate J. Patrick Lewis claim the best way to become successful is by following what they call the “BIC” rule: Butt In Chair. In other words, DO THE WORK! Don’t wait for something to happen. Don’t complain nothing’s happening. Don’t expect inspiration, coincidence, or luck to suddenly appear out of nowhere and help you achieve your goals.

To be honest, I really can’t say any success I’ve had has been due to luck. As I think about it, “luck” hasn’t played any part in this, as far as I can tell. What has played a big part is mostly just perseverance. And practice.

And more perseverance.

I still have not sold a book manuscript yet, although I continue sending them out. I’ve written several, and I continue writing them. I continue doing the work.

If you can’t count on luck, you’re going to need to count on yourself.

So do the work. Take the chances. Get busy – and don’t let yourself down!


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5 thoughts on “Do. The. Work!

  1. Kathy Brodsky

    Congratulations, Matt that you’re doing so well. I’m really happy for you – and everything you’re getting is so well deserved. What you say is true for any endeavor. We all have to “do the work!” Kathy Kathy Brodsky o.(603) 668-1975 / / Girl Scouts Studio

    “Like” my author page on Facebook


    • Moments in Our Lives • My Bent Tree & The Inside Story – Green Book Festival Honorable Mention • Just Sniffing Around • Purrsnikitty • The Winner is – Preferred Choice Award, Creative Child Magazine • Stover – Preferred Choice Award, Creative Child Magazine • A Horse Named Special – Creative Child Magazine Picture Book of the Year • A CatFish Tale – Creative Child Magazine Picture Book of the Year; Children’s Choices Award


  2. Laura Shovan

    Thanks, Matt. I needed to hear this today. The holidays are a challenging time for keeping up the writing routine. Congrats on all of your publications — 2015 is shaping up to be a good one!


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