Author, teacher, and expert Julie Hedlund had a wonderful tradition on her website that she called “Gratitude Sunday,” where she listed a variety of things she was/is grateful for (writing-related or not) and also included gratitude quotes.

Right now I’m listening to a podcast episode where Julie takes over for author-illustrator Katie Davis, with occasional help from Caldecott-winning illustrator, David Diaz. They ask faculty at the 2013 LA SCBWI conference why they are grateful to create books for children.

I thought this was such a wonderful practice, especially when we get into the submission, acceptance/rejection process and perhaps get more focused on what we don’t have instead of what we have. So my challenge to you today is to come up with at least three writing-related things for which you are grateful. Write them down. Tape them to your wall or your screen–somewhere where you can see them and remind yourself why you’re doing this.

Here’s my list:

  1. I’m grateful for the Zone, that amazing place where I sink so deeply into the story that I’m no longer aware of anything else.
  2. I’m grateful for the community of writers–SCBWI, my critique groups, my online writing pals, and the wonderful writers in my classes, workshops and the events where I present.
  3. I’m grateful for feedback from my gifted group and my agent, who always spark my creativity in surprising and exciting ways.
  4. I’m grateful for my readers, who keep me honest and remind me how reading a book we love can change our perspective and ourselves.

Brief aside: We are delighted to have Julie speaking at our Fall RMC-SCBWI Letters & Lines Conference Sept 28-29 about story book apps as well as leading a wonderful marketing intensive on Sunday afternoon. Click here to check it out! (Save $50 by registering on or before Sept 6)

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