In 1625 Francis Bacon said, "A wise man will make more opportunities than he finds."
Sometime in the 1990s an agent said to me, "every writer has to go through an apprenticeship, and writing a million words isn’t unusual before achieving your first sale."
Let me reinforce her theory by mentioning that many of my friends didn’t sell their first manuscript. Or their second. Often not even their fifth. I sold my third but it took years and many revisions. It also took angst, anger, dashed hopes and dreams, and tenacity out the wazoo.
Writing gentles my soul. I thrive when I'm world-building and conversing with my characters, as opposed to the negative emotions created by fussing and fuming about whether I'm THIS close to landing the next contract. So I've changed my approach toward the publication side of this crazy business. I'm far more picky about who I query, and when, because I'm excited to self-publish certain works. Is my changing approach caused by confidence? Somewhat. But it was also created by understanding how the publishing industry works and how fast it is changing.
Opportunities abound in our brave new publishing world. Let's take advantage of ALL of them!