Never Stop Writing
Never Stop Writing!
There's one thing I usually never do: give advise. But, just this once, I'm going to break my own rule.
If at one time in your writing career you decide to try and publish a story or article, and you find yourself being rejected over and over again by publishers, don't get discouraged and impatient with the way you think it should, or shouldn't go. Don't give up! With any endeavor you think is worth your time and effort, someone out in the wide earth will think the same way and want you to continue with whatever you're doing. They, as people know what they like and know who to keep reading. You, as a writer must continue to believe what you do is worth the effort to keep those few who actually believe in what you do keep coming back for more.
Ask yourself one thing: Do you think such writers as Stephen King, Dean Koontz, Stephen R. Donaldson, J.K. Rowlings, or Robert Asprin were automatically nationally known best selling authors over night? If you do, then you need to rethink what you do, and how you do it. Each of these authors have their own fan base and their own critics; just as you will. One of the oldest sayings I've ever heard says it all: If you can't take the heat; stay out of the kitchen. You may think this is a cliche, but in all reality it's the truth. To be able to write effectively and to make your mark in any endeavor that you choose to do in your life, you must be able to handle rejection. Because, I hate to break it to you, not everyone will like what you write about, or how you write, or even how much you write. I heard from more than one critique that Stephen King wrote by the pound. Have you ever read his book The Stand? It definitely was not a short story.
Write Every Day
In everything you do, you must practice to be good. So the best thing you can do as a writer, is to write. I don't care if all you do is write a letter to a relative or friend that you haven't seen in a long time, you need to write. Try to take a few moments out of each day and put something down on paper. In these times I know it's hard. Life can sneak up on you and kick you when you're bent over retrieving the morning paper from your doorstep. But you can use those lessons, and put those down on paper in the evenings. But to keep your edge and keep getting better, you need to do it over and over again. Practice, practice, practice.
When I was in college, a popular joke spread throughout the campus: What's the difference between a senior and a freshman? Answer: When the professor came in the classroom and said, 'good morning', freshmen would always answer with the same thing; 'good morning'. Seniors would write it down. This holds true in everything you do. A concert pianist takes years to be proficient, a linguist takes years to learn a language, and a writer takes years to be proficient enough to call themselves writers. Practice, practice, practice.
I've personally been rejected by more than one publisher. But I've also been accepted by a few. The few I was accepted by were from companies that helped writers self-publish. In those days I wasn't interested in doing something like that. But now . . . I'm not so sure. Even in these economic times, at some point one has to reexamine his/her way of thinking.
In reexamining my own fate in this world I've realized I should take my own (very limited, mind you) advise. In a short declarative sentence: I pulled the trigger. BANG! I've decided to take fate by the throat and shake some sense into it. In about 6 months I should have my book on the shelves ready for buyers. The publishers I decided to go with is Trafford Publishing. I know its a gamble, but what isn't in this life. Rejection isn't something I take to heart. No one has a fan base that spans every genre and every class in society. But if you think about all the millions of people in the U.S. (more than 313 million) anyone, including myself has a chance someone will like my work. And that's all I can hope for. All anyone can hope for. I personally don't write to please anyone but myself. But to be validated as a writer, one should have someone read it. So, I'm taking the chance and seeing where the dice will land. Nothing ventured.
The Same Old Song and Dance
I know, I know, you've heard this time and again: Don't give up! It gets to where it's the same old song and dance. You want someone to play a different tune and get on with it. But you know, the old tunes are sometimes the best tunes you'll ever hear.
I definitely wont give up. Al I have to think about is if just 1 percent of 1 percent of the U.S. population likes what I write, I can make my mortgage each month. I don't want to give anyone the wrong idea, not everyone can do it. It's sad, but true. But it can be learned. Don't stop learning. From your neighbor, your friends, your relatives, your sons and daughters. Anyone and everyone. But you want especially to learn from someone whose been there, done that, got the tee-shirt, so they can pass those lessons on to you. And it can be passed down just as any tradition or recipe you've learned from your Grandmother.
Just remember one thing: Never give up on the dream. Never stop writing. And never give in to your inner voice that tells you you're wasting your time.
Nothing (you feel) worth doing is ever a waste of time.
Ask Stephen King.
Or J.K. Rowling.
Or your Grandmother.