Taking The Next Step (Guest Blog)

I decided to have Jennifer on to guest-blog on my site because she’s going after her dream.

To me, literally the most important thing we can do in life is to pursue our passions and make it happen, no matter what.

Jennifer has now begun and I wish her all the best. Please enjoy her post.


Taking the Next Step


There’s that look. The one when you say you’re a writer and whoever you’re talking to doesn’t respond except to look at you like you’re nuts.


I’m intimately familiar with that look. Ever since the sixth grade, I’ve wanted to be a writer and while growing up, I’d say so. I always got the, ‘okay, and what else do you want to do?’


So I dabbled in writing for years but never branched out to do anything with it, afraid that, by sharing my writing, I’d only confirm I wasn’t capable of making it my career. I graduated high school, went to college, got married. You know, followed the respectable ‘life plan.’


I like to think my creator hit me upside the head with a two-by-four. He created me with this passion to write. And he used my husband to get me back on track.


About a year ago we moved and my husband suggested I focus on my writing instead of searching for a full time job.


God, did that thought scare me. But it also thrilled the daylights out of me. Tentatively, I started a blog with the idea that I’d use it to ‘thicken’ my skin to the experience of others reading my stories. I’d heard this was the thing to do to build an ‘author platform,’ whatever that meant.


Well, you have to tell people you have a blog. You have to interact. Great-leaping frogs! You mean I have to use twitter? Well, yes, that’s what needed to happen. So, after working up my nerve, I started posting on facebook and Twitter. Small beans, baby steps. Whatever you’d like to call it.


Ultimately this lead me to joining a writing site that started talking with me on Twitter. A site called Writer’s Carnival.


That was back in March, I think. Anyway, one thing led to another, in a series of steps I’m not even sure I could outline now, until I was invited to join eight others from the site in publishing a short story anthology.


I personally never would have thought of attempting to self publish. I never thought I had it in me, but now we’re working on publishing at the end of the month. This’ll be my first publication ever.


And none of this would have happened if I hadn’t started the blog. I’ve never even met the other authors of this anthology beyond the internet, yet the interaction with them is what made publication possible for me.


When I started, I couldn’t see past the next post. For the most part, I still can’t. I know many writers who don’t feel like they’re getting anywhere or who think starting a ‘platform’ is a waste of time.


I might have agreed with you a year ago, maybe even a few months ago. I’m not one of those who built a following in a couple months and even now, I don’t have a large following. Many times it simply feels like you’re trudging on. Throwing something into the void with little response.


It’s not true though. The smallest step, posting on twitter, talking to a complete stranger, whatever the step may be, can lead you to achieving your dream. Whether that dream’s writing like me or singing like Andrew or something else, you probably won’t see the outcome from the next step, but take the step anyway. You never know where it’ll lead.


So I’ll leave you with this one challenge. Think about what you want, what dream really makes your heart beat in excitement, and take one step toward achieving it, even if that step’s only saying hello to someone.




Jennifer M Zeiger




Jennifer M. Zeiger lives in the beautiful state of Colorado with her husband, dog and two cats. She graduated with her Bachelors in English in 2008 with minors in Accounting and Recreation. She loves writing fantasy in particular but will read just about anything. On Oct. 31st of this year, her first publication, Midnight Abyss, will become available on Amazon.


Jennifer Zeiger

20 thoughts on “Taking The Next Step (Guest Blog)

  1. Sofia Essen

    I completely agree with you, Andrew – the most important thing we can do in life is to pursue our passions and make it happen… no matter what!

    Jennifer, a great guest post. I’m one of Andrew’s loyal followers and now I’m following your blog, too.

  2. arloc888

    Oh, Jennifer, you’re an excellent writer! I wish I can write as error-free as you, and you’re lucky to have a fellow writer friend in Andrew.

  3. Laura

    Good on you Jennifer. All the best things in life come from that flicker of bravery at the end of a great idea. All the best for the publication of Midnight Abyss!xx

  4. nantubre

    congratulations to you Jennifer! Your decision to pursue that which adds to your own fulfillment is inspiring. There is more to self publishing than meets the eye, so hang in there with it and be prepared for 1) a surprisingly complicated journey and 2) a surprisingly thrilling journey! I published my first novel through self-pubbing in February and do not regret a minute of it. Why did it take me so long? Which leads into my next observation about you…you are not testing the waters anymore. You are sure of what is in the water and you are wading into the middle with confidence! You go, girl!

  5. asmith67

    Congratulations on pursuing your dream!! And thank you for being an inspiration to me! I too am a writer, and only a couple of months ago starting building my own platform. I’ve never heard of that phrase, but I can only assume by writing continuously and posting to sites like Facebook and Twitter will help get my writing out there. It’s a scary place and one that I’ve only started to explore. Your story gives me hope that I am going in the right direction and I won’t stop until I’ve achieved my dreams! Not to mention, I’ve never heard of Writing Carnival. I’m going to check into that. Thank you so much for sharing!

  6. Pingback: Thank You | Jennifer M Zeiger

  7. jennifermzeiger

    Good luck with your writing goals, asmith67! Posting on Facebook and Twitter does go a long way. So does exactly what you’re doing, commenting and getting to know other bloggers. For platform information, check out Michael Hyatt. He talks about it a lot. And for other writers, Writer’s Carnival is awesome. (writerscarnival.ca). Again, good luck=)

  8. fikayo

    I totally understand. I am a writer too choked up with being other things. I do hope that I would have the courage to shut out everything and devote all to writing. I have started a bog and while there are days when a post send the view up so high, there are other days when it seem nobody is interested in what I have to say. I do however know that I can not live without being a poet, if I don’t put my poems on paper, I’ll still be out there writing them in my head. I am a poet pressurized to be a novelist or playwright. Thank Jennifer, your post has given me the strength to carry on.

  9. sharonsdarrow

    Congratulations Jennifer! I am a writer also, and new at blogging. It is difficult to write while running a business, still staying active in animal rescue, and caring for 5 cats and a Great Dane, but well worth the effort. And I shouldn’t forget my husband of 47 years. He is my greatest supporter, but sometimes gets frustrated with the small amount of time we have together. Best of luck to you. Keep everyone posted about the progress of your new book launch, so we can look for it.

  10. carissacarnahan

    Jennifer, thank you for the post. It is a great addition to the content Mr. Hines has.
    I am so happy that you were able to follow you dream and be successful. I am going to look for your book, the title sounds really interesting.
    I love that you point out that it was not your idea initially to focus on writing. It sounds like you had a great support structure that enable you to take that risk.
    Thank you again for sharing :)

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