writing tips

Stay in your own lane

Today’s post is motocross themed. My debut YA novel, Motocross Me, was the first real novel I ever wrote. As in, I didn’t quit halfway through and actually finished the thing. I know it’s because I cared about that book enough to get it written. I wanted people to read it. After all, I had incorporated all of my favorite things into that book: motocross, hot boys, friendships, texas heat.

(Okay maybe I don’t love that last one as much)

Motocross was a huge part of my life when I was growing up. Now that I’m all adult-ish and stuff, I have to deal with real world things, like the fact that your parents no longer buy you dirt bikes and maintain them when you’re pushing 30. (wth, right? ha) But I still think in motocross terms. One of which is the theme of my post today.

Stay in your own lane.

Kevin Windham knows it.

It’s not just advice in motocross. It’s truth. Staying in your own lane makes you faster, makes you safer, and it’s a hell of a lot easier than skipping all over the track like some kind of idiot. As a kid practicing with the adults, you stay in your own lane to avoid being barreled into by a massive bike and its rider.

In the writing world it’s easy to see your fellow writers, people you consider peers, writing books just like yours and blowing up into best-selling stardom while you’re just sitting there Tweeting about a book no one wants.

Sound familiar?

Here’s the thing. Stay in your own lane. Keep your eyes on your books and let that be the source of your happiness. Celebrate your accomplishments, ignore everyone else’s. I’ve seen too many writers blow up their own happiness because they’re too busy being jealous over another author. I’ve even lost a good friend to her own insecure jealousy. There’s a reason they call it the green-eyed monster.

Allowing yourself to fill with jealousy over another author’s success will only destroy you slowly from the inside. It is NOT worth it. The thing is, they aren’t you and they never will be. That’s not a bad thing. You are worthy of all the successes you strive for, so long as you never give up on them.