Tuesday, August 27, 2013

A Dream Deferred

I'm sorry I haven't posted for a couple weeks. I really am trying to get into the habit of writing every week. I'm even sorrier that I am posting now to bring bad news.

I got an email yesterday from my publisher that they are shutting down and thus my novel, The Shifting, is not going to be published. All rights revert back to me, so legally I am free and clear to start shopping it out to publishers and agents, but still, I'm back at square one with one year wasted. I don't know where or how to start again.

Honestly, I'm not doing too well right now. I'm hurt and angry and extremely disappointed and looking to blame someone. I don't blame my publisher, because bad business happens and it's not like they were trying to hurt me. So the blame is landing back on my own head: I should have farmed out the book to bigger publishers or found an agent. I should have sent other things out so the year wouldn't have been wasted. I should never have gotten my hopes up, because I should have known happiness couldn't last as long as it did without a huge fall coming.

This is a downer post, I know. But it's my blog and I have to talk about how I feel. This is worse, to me, than rejection. Rejection means "work harder and try again." Rejection means "we don't have space for your work here, but try something else later," if you're lucky. Rejection is a bump in the road. What I have here is a stalled car on the wrong road, and now I need to figure out how to fix it and find my way to where I should be.

The hardest thing about this is that I had a glimpse - a glimpse - of my dream coming true. I've wanted to be a writer since I was 11. Since then, I've wanted to see my work printed. Having a novel published was my big dream since before I had the skills to make it happen. And then, on one miraculous day, it happened. For one year I saw my dreams coming true, and now suddenly it's gone. I feel like Cinderella might if, while sitting in rags and weeping, she had her fairy godmother come to her, only to disappear again. I wonder if it would have been better if I never had my hopes up at all. It feels like too much, right now, to ask for another miracle, a permanent one this time.

I don't know how many people read this blog, but if you're reading it and know of any publishers or agents who might be interested in my work, feel free to leave me a tip. I need all the help I can get right now.

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Writer Quotes

So, it's been a slow week, writing-wise. I did start work on my thesis novel, and that's going well enough, but there's not enough there to comment on yet. Suffice it to say, I understand my main character well, so that's good. At least, well enough to stop myself twice because "she wouldn't act like that."

I've also learned that I have become so used to rejection letters that when one says, "Thank you for sending us your work. Unfortunately, we have no place for it in our magazine. Please remember us in the future," I feel all warm and tingly because that means THEY LIKED IT! They just couldn't use it.

Because it's a slow week, I decided to list a bunch of fun writing quotes I found lately, both funny and inspiring.

“Writing a book is a horrible, exhausting struggle, like a long bout of some painful illness. One would never undertake such a thing if one were not driven on by some demon whom one can neither resist nor understand.”
—George Orwell

“We are all apprentices in a craft where no one ever becomes a master.”
—Ernest Hemingway

"Being a good writer is 3% talent, 97% not being distracted by the internet."

“If a nation loses its storytellers, it loses its childhood.”
—Peter Handke

“When your story is ready for rewrite, cut it to the bone. Get rid of every ounce of excess fat. This is going to hurt; revising a story down to the bare essentials is always a little like murdering children, but it must be done.”
—Stephen King

"The cure for mixed metaphors, I have always found, is for the patient to be obliged to draw a picture of the result."

“Anyone who is going to be a writer knows enough at 15 to write several novels.”
—May Sarton

“When writing a novel a writer should create living people; people, not characters. A character is a caricature.”
—Ernest Hemingway

"Only a mediocre writer is always at his best."

"Writers don't get mad. They just write you into their next novel (as the victim)."

"If you can’t annoy somebody, there’s little point in writing."

 And last but not least,

"I write fiction. What's your superpower?"