Thursday, July 28, 2011

The Five C’s of Passion

Earlier this week I got to hear a former member of our photo club give a talk. It wasn’t just about photography though! Jackie exhibited passion for what she did, and a desire to fearlessly keep pushing forward. The items she discussed can be applied to anything in life and I’m stealing those points to show you how.

You need to maintain consistency. This can refer to your writing, maintaining the right POV or keeping details straight. This can apply to an author, as each book should at least as good as the previous one and giving people what they expect. It can be for the speaker, who should deliver quality talks every time.

This may seem obvious, but there’s more to it than that. What is it about you that’s unique? Take a different approach to your story. Try something completely new when speaking. Don’t be afraid to try something new. Give people something other than the same old thing. Let the creativity in you flow and find your strengths.

Customer Driven
Not that the customer is always right, but give them what they want while still remembering you are the professional. Work with them, but don’t be afraid to say no, this is best. Your readers want the story to go this direction? Weigh the options and then make the best decision for all, including yourself.

We call it networking. Building a platform. But it’s not just a 1000 blog followers or 5000 Facebook friends - it’s making quality connections. It’s establishing and maintaining relationships - meaningful connections with writers, authors, speakers, publishers, etc. This builds loyalty and leads to referrals.

This is the best one! A candle can light another candle. As we learn, change, and grow, we gain knowledge and experience - and this can be passed on to others. Giving it away doesn’t diminish us - like the candle, we are still lit. We can now share and teach and help others. And they in turn can pass it on to even more people.

As I listened to Jackie, I realized our journeys were very similar. While I am still writing, I am now in the teaching mode, and it dawned on me how much that is my passion. That’s why I do seminars on publishing and promoting. That’s why I offer private consultation for writers. That’s why I format books for authors. That’s why I do motivational talks for businesses and colleges. THAT is my passion.

And spurred by Jackie’s talk, I redesigned my professional website to appear more dynamic and unique, which is something she also talked about - Spunk On A Stick

How about you? How can you apply the five C’s to your passion? What is your specific passion?


  1. The consistency thing loomed over my head as I wrote my second book. Didn't want to let anyone down. I understand the connections part though!

  2. You see, that's the difference between us, you've come up with a very intelligent metaphor using a candle and I wrote a post on how to kill a character with one. Perhaps I'm a bit demented?

  3. I also think consistency can mean writing (or doing whatever is your passion) every day or every Saturday, or whatever schedule you set.

    Now, I'm off to see your website.

  4. Great post as always. I seem to hesitate on the electronic connection phase. I don't have the enthusiasm of my friends to build in every media. I find it very time consuming.

  5. Diane, these are such wise words. I had the same take on consistency that Helen did. Parking my butt in my seat on a consistent basis - and it's the one I'm having the hardest time with with my writing. With Sugartime, my singing group, the passion flows more easily.

  6. These are great! I really like the candles one, too. And your website looks terrific, Diane!

  7. Alex, you do connections very well.

    Clarissa, you're just thinking like a mystery/thriller writer, that's all.

    Helen, it can!

    Mary, I used to be on dozens of social sites and it was too much.

    Karen, that's why we have to figure out what moves us.

    Thanks, Laura!

  8. Certainly they are all important, but I'll dwell on one in particular -- Connections.

    I think especially with bloggers and FBers, that authors tend to focus too much on quantity, and less on quality.

    Yours is one of the few blogs I post on regularly. It's because I genuinely like your blog, what you have to say, and find your insights useful, and often personal and insightful.

    I post regularly on only a few other blog sites -- probably less than 20, and rarely more than 10 comments in one day. I try to avoid trite, one-line, stop-by comments on +200 sites.

    I focus on quality, not quality, see.

    It pays off, I think. I hope. I believe. I will believe that it pays off even if someone tells me otherwise, to post snippets on a thousand sites instead of lengthy novellas on Spunky Di's blog, because I simply am not a quantity sort of pass-me-around guy, not when it comes to my Connections.

    I want quality Connections, even if just a few.

    Just like you said in so fewer words, and that's why I like your blog.

    - Eric

  9. I have to do more of the lighting the candle. I would also add a continuing ed element. I keep trying to learn more.

  10. I think it's a great list--love the candle metaphor (though Clarissa's comment cracked me up). I think these 5 things are needed for excellence and if you're passionate, they are much easier to do. To some degree they come naturally.

  11. I certainly can see the motivation in this post! I would also say add, "A connection is not an avatar and when you share your lit candle, it burns brighter." :)
    Jules @ Trying To Get Over The Rainbow

  12. These 5 C's are great - and so important. I know I struggle with consistency - always a work in progress. And connections are always good to have, especially in the writing world. Which is where I wanna be, of course. Writing is absolutely my passion! :)

  13. Such fantastic advice! I think the last one is pretty evident for writer bloggers for sure!

  14. "Quality connections," I like that term. That's important to me, and so I'm building a following slowly and want to get to know the people behind the blogs. And the candle analogy, I love that. Yes, I believe each of us has something to share with others, and so we should pass it on. Thanks for sharing the five C's!

  15. I love all your shared words of wisdom but I think Connections is growing into one of the most important tools, but yes, they need to be quality. Easy to get quantity.


  16. Hart, when we find our passion, it's easier to move forward.

    Donea, then you have discovered the secret.

    Glad everyone enjoyed this!

  17. thanks Diane! I really appreciate that what I said resonated with you! I look forward to a long life as a photographer and professional and motivational speaker, inspiring people in all creative fields : )

  18. Great post! And I love the title of your blog! I'm new to your site and so glad I stopped by!

  19. Jackie, keep that attitude and you'll have all that and more!

    Welcome, Melissa!

  20. These are very true, Diane. And hit me close to home. I've not been very consistent lately.