Monday, March 23, 2009

Writers' Questions - Don't Be Shy!

Over the past few months, since I started this blog, many of you have asked questions. Perhaps you awkwardly felt you should know the answers and even felt a bit embarrassed asking. I just wanted you to know that nothing you ask here can be considered inconsequential, because we've all been in the same boat at some point, and, no doubt, still have more to learn.

I certainly can't claim to know the answers. A lot of my apparently silly questions I chose not to show to the world; I found the answers through Googling - there's a wealth of information out there. And my favorite blog for Everything You Wanted To Know About Writing is Anne Mini's Author! Author! I've put the link here for convenience, but it's permanently in the side bar too. The postings at her site are in the hundreds, and cover just about anything you think of. Don't wait until you've reached the point in your writing where you need to check something. Have a little wander through her archives to see if any of it applies to what you're doing now. It will probably save you a lot of re-writes.

Unless you've found an astute and helpful agent, dealt with an editor, made it through to the publishing process, it's difficult to know all the oddities associated with this business. Like anything else, we learn as we go along.

I am grateful for the amount of input I've had from followers of this blog. It's amazing to me just how much personal time writers put into helping fellow writers. We all want to succeed, but we also recognize that there's no need to guard ourselves from one another. A fellow writer at a writer's site I belong to just picked up an agent. Oh, my, how exciting was that to see her able to bow out of our little forum on "Finding an Agent"! We know how hard we work, how much of ourselves are poured into our manuscripts, how we wince at the rejections, and that we must learn to grin and bear it. We can only stand up and cheer for those of us who move forward to the next stage.

The kind of feedback and support we get from the blogs we follow are a modern wonder. In the olden days, before the internet, you were restricted to the input of just a few like souls, through writers' clubs, seminars, and retreats, and not all of us were able to take advantage of those, either. Don't ever be shy about your writer's confusion. It's happened, or is happening, to all of us.

I mentioned in my postscript on Friday that I received a second partial request. I promptly sent out another query. My Total Agent Query Standings are: 12 pending; 2 Partials under consideration; and 5 rejects.

POSTSCRIPT: One of my Partials has just asked for a thirty-day exclusive to read the whole manuscript. Oh, bliss...

See you on Wednesday.

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Quotes to Consider

"If you would not be forgotten, as soon as you are dead and rotten, Either write things worth reading, or do things worth writing." ~Benjamin Franklin

"Well behaved women rarely make history."~Laurel Thatcher Ulrich

“A ship in harbor is safe, but that is not what ships are built for.”~William G.T. Shedd (1820-1894), theologian, teacher, pastor

"It is common sense to take a method and try it. If it fails, admit it frankly and try another. But above all, try something." ~Franklin D Roosevelt (1882-1945), 32nd U.S. president

“Adopt the pace of nature: her secret is patience.”
~Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882), essayist, poet, philosopher

"Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn't do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover." ~Mark Twain

"You miss 100% of the shots you don't take."
~ Wayne Gretzky