Posted by: nancyisanders | September 18, 2013

Welcome to My World!


Many of you are following along with the journey I’m taking to submit a nonfiction article for Highlights.

I’m going very slowly, as you may have realized by now. There are 2 reasons for this.

#1: I want to be sure to give each of you the time to think and the time to do the same steps I’m doing.

#2: I’m working on this project for the goal of Personal Fulfillment. If any of you have my how-to book for children’s writers, you’ll understand that this goal is one of three goals I work toward each week in my writing schedule. It’s called the Triple Crown of Success.

And for the goal of Personal Fulfillment, I spend the smallest blocks of time in my writing week targeting this goal. (I explain this in detail in my strategy called the Writer’s Pyramid, also in that book.)

So I wanted to share with you just a little bit about what’s happening in my corner of the writing world so you can understand one of the reasons I’m progressing slowly in this journey for submitting a nonfiction article to Highlights.

(Just a note…I’m thinking of doing something fun here on my blog after all these steps are completed…writing a SECOND nonfiction article to submit and trying to do it as fast as I can to show you how to go through all the steps again in a more focused, tight schedule…what do you think?)

Here’s what’s happened in my real world this past week:
Last Friday I got an e-mail from an editor who is taking one of my children’s manuscripts through the acquisitions process. She asked me for some more material before she draws up a contract to offer to me, and I promised her that hopefully this week.

On Monday this week, I got another e-mail from a different publisher that includes a children’s manuscript that I already wrote and submitted to her under a signed contract. This manuscript has undergone its first round of editorial edits and also feedback from a fact checker. I need to go through the entire book manuscript and go through all the edits and then return it for the next round of edits…ASAP.

On Tuesday this week (yesterday) I got an e-mail from a publisher with another children’s manuscript I already wrote and submitted per contract. It just finished its first round of editing, too, so I need to go through this entire book manuscript and go through all the edits and return it for the next round of edits, ASAP.

On Friday (in 2 days) I’m teaching a teleclass on the Common Core State Standards and how it affects you as a children’s writer. So I’ve really been digging around and researching and preparing for teaching that class and will wrap this all up in the next two days to be ready to share with you.

These projects all fall under my goal of Writing to Earn Income. Plus, for my goal of Writing to Get Published, next week I’m planning to write and submit an article for a children’s column I contribute for each month. I don’t get paid for this column, but the exposure is fantastic, it builds up my published credits, and it keeps my writing muscles strong.

I wanted to let you take a peek into my world as you’re following along on my journey to write a nonfiction article for Highlights so you can see how I fit it into my week. The next step I’ll be taking on this project will be to really dig in and start dissecting a published nonfiction article and then developing the outline for mine.

But before we get started on that, I want to share a guest post in my next blog from author Chris Eboch. She’s had a fiction story accepted by Highlights and is gracious to share with us the story behind her success. So stay tuned! Hopefully you’ll pick up some tips so you can successfully submit fiction to Highlights, too!


  1. Hi Nancy, I don’t know how you do it and always look so calm. I always seem to take so long to accomplish anything. Do you give yourself a time limit on each project you are doing?

    Also, I have a question about the Friday teleclass. I haven’t participated in any of these before, so I’m not sure how it works. I am very interested in the information, but I won’t be available at the time you are having it. If I sign up for it, can I hear it at a later time? Thanks.

    • It was nice to hear from you Chris. And personally, I am such a snail at writing tasks that yes, I have to actually set the kitchen timer for 15 minutes or 30 minutes to break bigger tasks into smaller tasks because otherwise I’ll let myself drown in research or struggle over a single sentence.

      And I’m so excited you’re interested in the Friday class! Everyone who signs up will get an audio replay e-mailed to you on Monday, hopefully. So you can listen to it on your own time.

      • Thank you for the timer tip! I spend way too much time researching the simplest things and agonize over simple sentences, too. Right now, I am stuck writing the middle grade novel in a month that I ordered in June because I cannot come up with the name of my main character. For now, I just write MC when I am referring to her. It took me a while just to figure out to do that. Before that I didn’t even start it because I had no name.
        Dumb, huh? BUT, I am determined to write it, just not in a month.

      • Glad you’re pushing through, Chris! And that’s a great idea to call her MC until you think of her right name. Sometimes that can take soooo long, but it’s good to put MC or XX or YY in a spot and just move forward until those tiny yet important details come to you.

  2. Whew! I’m tired just reading about what you’re doing! Wow, Nancy, you are definitely a go-getter and a super hard worker. Thanks for sharing with us how it’s done and how it’s possible. Great encouragement here! XOXO

  3. I love reading about all that you’re working on! How exciting, yet tiring! I hope to hear good acceptance news soon from these contracts + Highlights!

    • Thanks, Tina! All three contracts are pretty much in the bag, thankfully…two are already signed and one is almost there! Now…if I can only break into Highlights. :o)

  4. Wow, Nancy! I’m so impressed with all you have going on! Congratulations to you on the books you already have in the pipeline and on the one you’re about to receive a contract on. You’re such an inspiring person to be around.

    • Thanks for your sweet words of encouragement, Ev!!!

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