You are responsible for the success of your writing career.
And you are responsible for it 100% of the time.
The first time I read this, it hit hard. My lack of publishing success was my fault. I wasn't studying my craft like I should have been. I wasn't writing like I should have been and I definitely wasn't sending out like I should have been.
It was easier to sit and complain about how hard it was to break in to the "good" markets, how difficult it was to figure out what publishers wanted and that the editors just didn't "get" what I was writing.
After sulking a bit, I realized I could change my lack of success. I could steer my writing career in a new, better direction.
Sure, there are some things I can't control such as whether an agent dislikes my work. But I can control how many agents get the chance to see it. I can do the research needed to make sure I'm targeting agents who do like things similar to mine. I control how polished my work is when I send it to that agent, again giving it the best chance of acceptance.
I can't control whether an editor will want my piece for their magazine. But again, I can control the research needed to ensure I target the places with the best chance of acceptance.
I can't control rejection letters but I can control how I react to them.
So, to remind myself that I'm in charge, I tweaked the quote and made it mine. Then, played with it a bit so it looks something like a little tree. (see below) I printed it out, posted it on my bulletin board. I even made a few bookmarks out of it. I've taken responsibility for my writing career.
Today, I want to encourage each of you to take control of your writing career. Get rid of whatever things are holding you back. Sure, it's work but well worth it.