Natalie McMyler, founder of Dream Catchers South // Photo Credit: Anna Conn Photography

I am a writer but I also proudly call myself a “writerpreneur,” a woman who wants to use her writing to make an impact and an income. So in addition to reading and working on the craft of writing, I also learn all I can from business-minded people. This is why I attend events like the Dream Catchers South conference, a one-day seminar for female entrepreneurs hosted in Birmingham each spring. Natalie McMyler, the founder of Dream Catchers South, is the owner of the clothing company 11th Thread, which she launched in 2014 because she wanted to be able to stay home with her son and pursue her passion of owning her own business.

Last year she hosted the first Dream Catchers South conference.

“After launching my boutique I quickly realized that running my own business was hard work and often times lonely!” Natalie says. “I was inspired to start Dream Catchers as a way to connect and learn from other women in business. We all have strengths we can teach each other.”

Because last year’s conference was such a success she decided to make this an annual event and she also started a Dream Catchers South Facebook group to give lady bosses a way to stay connected between events.

“I believe the best business success comes from collaborating with others, not competing,” Natalie says.

Natalie recently started hosting Facebook Live seminars in the Dream Catchers Facebook group featuring speakers teaching a variety of topics.

On Tuesday, July 10 at 7 p.m. CT I will be a featured Facebook Live speaker giving tips on blogging and how to use it to support your business. Join the Dream Catchers South Facebook group so you won’t miss this broadcast.

Natalie kicked off this year’s Dream Catchers South conference with six tips on how to catch your dreams. Though her talk was obviously for small business owners I was struck by how each tip could easily apply to writers and bloggers, too.

Know there is a reason you’re dreaming the dreams you’re dreaming.

I am so adamant about women sharing their stories because I believe there’s so much power in doing so. Not only can sharing your story give you healing, it can give others hope. When a woman hears or reads your story, a story that looks a lot like her own, she no longer feels alone — and neither do you.

You will have major failures; learn from each one.

If you want to be a professional writer, whether you want to write books or magazine articles or build a blog, you need to prepare for rejection. A LOT of rejection. But don’t get bitter, get better! Figure out what you need to improve to turn that “No” into a “Yes!”

Collaboration > Competition

Writers need community. Period.  Maybe you need an accountability partner to make sure you’re doing the work or a beta reader to give you feedback on your work in progress. Maybe you need a blogging buddy to keep you consistent or help you take pictures for your posts. As Danielle LaPorte says, “Find your tribe and love them hard.”

Celebrate the small victories.

Natalie encouraged us to reward ourselves for the little things and I couldn’t agree more. Don’t just wait until you get the book deal or the brand collaboration or the freelance contract. Reward yourself for sending the proposal or pitch. Reward yourself for sticking to your writing regimen for 21 days. Reward yourself for publishing a new blog post each week for a month.

If you treat your business like a hobby it will pay like one.

When Natalie said this I was ready to pass a collection plate! And I needed this word! We writers often treat our craft like a hobby — only writing or blogging when we “feel like it” or when we can “find some free time.” If you expect an editor or a brand to take you seriously, you have to take yourself seriously first. Develop a writing or blogging regimen and stick to it. Create an author website, a Facebook business page, and an Instagram business account.

Remember a goal without a plan is just a wish. But don’t stop there.

Take your dream and from it set specific goals with specific deadlines. Then break each goal down into steps. That’s your plan. But you must also take action. So schedule when you’re going to execute each of these steps and get to work!

Join the Dream Catchers South Facebook group so you won’t miss my Facebook Live broadcast on blogging, set for Tuesday, July 10 at 7 p.m. CT.